What is plasmotomy? Give two examples of it.

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Hint The term plasmotomy makes you think of an organism containing plasma that undergoes ‘-tomy’ or fission. This is a form of reproduction that does not require two gametes for it to produce offspring cells.

Complete answer:
- Plasmotomy is a form of asexual reproduction occurring in protozoa, where a multinucleate cell divides into multinucleate daughter cells without mitosis. The cytoplasm divides into two or more masses.
- Generally, asexual reproduction in microorganisms occurs through binary fission where karyokinesis is followed by cytokinesis. In these organisms, there are several nuclei surrounded by a common cytoplasm. The daughter cells formed are also multinucleated and are surrounded by a cover called a cyst. The cysts burst leading to the release of nuclei. After division, the daughter cells later grow and regain the normal number of nuclei by nuclear division.
- Examples of organisms undergoing plasmotomy are Opalina, Plasmodium, Pelomyxa amoeba, etc.

Additional Information: - Reproduction in protozoa can be both asexual and sexual. Types and examples of both are as follows:
- Asexual reproduction includes (1) binary fission that is subdivided into transverse, longitudinal, and oblique binary, (2) multiple fission or sporulation that is further divided into gamogony, schizogony, and sporogony, (3) Plasmotomy, and (4) Budding.
- Sexual reproduction includes (1) syngamy which subdivides into autogamy, paedogamy, hologamy, merogamy, isogamy, and anisogamy, (2) Conjugation, (3) Automixis.

Note: - Protozoa can be parasitic and pathogenic or symbiotic, or commensal. The majority of them are free-living in aquatic or soil environments.
- Other forms of reproduction in protozoa are plasmogamy, regeneration, and parthenogenesis.