Cytokinesis

Cytokinesis
Animal Cell Undergoing Cytokinesis. Credit: Martin Wuehr, Timothy Mitchison / Cell Image Library

Definition:

Cytokinesis is the division of the cytoplasm in eukaryotic cells that produces distinct daughter cells. Cytokinesis occurs at the end of the cell cycle following mitosis or meiosis.

In animal cell division, cytokinesis occurs when a contractile ring of microfilaments forms a cleavage furrow that pinches the cell membrane in half. In plant cells, a cell plate is constructed that divides the cell in two.