Draw a line graph showing generation time every 20 mins for a cell diving up to 360 mins, using...


Draw a line graph showing generation time every 20 mins for a cell diving up to 360 mins, using binary fission.

Binary Fission:

In the process of binary fission, which is a form of asexual reproduction, a bacterial cell can divide into two daughter cells. Often after about 20 minutes, the daughter cells themselves can divide. What kind of growth curve would this produce?

Answer and Explanation:

Below is a table and a graph showing the multiplication of a cell such as a bacterium with a generation time of 20 minutes, and binary fission occurring every generation. This is a classic example of exponential growth without restriction.

If such growth continues unhindered, the population can get to extremely high levels in a short time. 360 minutes is just 6 hours, and in that time, nearly a quarter of a million bacteria had been produced from a single bacterium. Given ideal conditions, such as in an incubator with bacteria growing on a Petri dish, this could occur and this is why large colonies could appear in the Petri dish in just hours.

In most cases in the body, fortunately, this does not occur. The immune system would work quickly to begin to destroy the bacteria and would in most cases be able to keep the population from getting so large so quickly. If it could not keep up with the growth of the bacterial population, though, then a serious illness or death could result.

Exponential Growth

Time In Minutes Total Population Size
0 1
20 2
40 4
60 8
80 16
100 32
120 64
140 128
160 256
180 512
200 1,024
220 2,048
240 4,096
260 8,192
280 16,484
300 32,768
320 65,536
340 131,072
360 262,144

Learn more about this topic:

Exponential Growth: Definition & Examples

from High School Algebra I: Help and Review

Chapter 6 / Lesson 10

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