Mitosis: An Interactive Animation
This animation demonstrates the stages of mitosis in an animal cell. Use the control buttons along the bottom to run the complete animation. Click on any intermediate stage (for example, Anaphase), and see a representative still frame. Interphase: Cells may appear inactive during this stage, but they are quite the opposite. Prophase: During this first mitotic stage, the nucleolus fades and chromatin (replicated DNA and associated proteins) condenses into chromosomes. Prometaphase: In this stage the nuclear envelope breaks down so there is no longer a recognizable nucleus. Metaphase: Tension applied by the spindle fibers aligns all chromosomes in one plane at the center of the cell. Anaphase: Spindle fibers shorten, the kinetochores separate, and the chromatids (daughter chromosomes) are pulled apart and begin moving to the cell poles. Telophase: The daughter chromosomes arrive at the poles and the spindle fibers that have pulled them apart disappear.