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Difference between diploid and haploid cells

There are two types of cells in the body, haploid cells and diploid cells. The biggest difference is related to the number of chromosomes each cell contains while diploid cells contain two sets of chromosomes (2n), haploid cells contain a single set of chromosomes (1n).

Diploid cells Haploid cells
Definition They contain two complete sets of chromosomes (2nd). They have half the number of chromosomes (n), that is, they only contain a complete set of chromosomes.
Cell division They reproduce by mitosis, producing daughter cells that are exact replicas. Haploid cells are the result of the process of meiosis, a type of cell division in which diploid cells divide to give rise to haploid germ cells.
Organisms Humans and most animals are considered diploid organisms. Algae and fungi are examples of organisms that are haploid for most of their life. Male bees, wasps and ants are also haploid.
Example of cells Diploid cells are found in the skin, blood, and muscle cells (also known as somatic cells). Sperm and eggs (also known as gametes).

haploids and diploids

Which cells are haploid and diploid?

In humans, the autosomal cells (or somatic) are diploid cells, containing two sets of chromosomes (2nd). These cells can be found in the skin, blood and muscle cells. The number of chromosomes (n) differs in different organisms, and in humans, the complete set (2n) comprises 46 chromosomes.

Haploid cells are found in the gametes or germ cells, and contain only one set of chromosomes (n). An example of haploid cells are cells found in sperm and the egg.

Cell division and reproduction

Meiosis

All animal cells have a fixed number of chromosomes in the cells of the body, existing in homologous pairs (2nd). Each pair of chromosomes consists of one chromosome from the mother and the second from the father.

During the process of meiosis (cell division for sexual reproduction), diploid cells (2n) divide to produce haploid cells, which contain only one set of chromosomes (n).

When the male and female gametes fuse during fertilization and zygote formation, the number of chromosomes is restored back to 2nd. Thus, diploid cells are those that contain a complete set of chromosomes, while haploid cells are those that have half the number of chromosomes in the nucleus (n).

This process does not occur in organisms that reproduce through asexual processes, such as bacteria. In plant cells, the “n” stage, or haploid, is a large part of their life cycle.

Mitosis

Cell growth is the result of mitosis, a process by which stem cells divide to give rise to identical haploid daughter cells, which contain the same number of chromosomes.

This process differs slightly in different cell types. Animal cells suffer from “open” mitosis, with rupture of the nuclear membrane, while organisms such as fungi and yeasts suffer from closed mitosis, keeping their nuclear membrane intact.

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To sum up

1. A haploid cell has only one set of chromosomes (n), while diploid cells have two sets of chromosomes (2n).

2. In humans, the somatic cells are diploid, while the gametes they are haploid.

3. Diploid cells develop as a result of cell division mitoticwhile haploid cells develop as a result of cell division meiotic.

4. Mitosis produces 2 identical daughter cells, where both mother and daughter cells are diploid. In meiosis, a diploid cell divides twice to produce 4 haploid daughter cells.

5. Humans and most animals are considered diploid organisms, while algae and fungi are examples of organisms that are haploid for most of their lives. Male bees, wasps and ants are also haploid.

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