Difference Between Fragmentation and Regeneration

By : Neha Dhyani

Updated : Jul 14, 2022, 16:02

If you are not a science student, you would be unaware of the fragmentation and regeneration differences. This page will discuss the major dissimilarity or difference between fragmentation and regeneration.

Though the main similarity between these two processes is that they are a part of reproduction, variation arises in how the process occurs in any organism. Read till the end to learn the difference between regeneration and fragmentation in detail and also understand which organisms follow such reproduction processes to multiply.

Key Differences between Fragmentation and Regeneration

The primary difference between fragmentation and regeneration lies within their names. Fragmentation is where an organism splits into fragments, each growing into a new individual. On the other hand, regeneration (re + generate) causes certain body parts, for example, a limb of an organism, to regrow when it gets lost.

The Difference between fragmentation and regeneration in class 10 is part of the advanced biology subject. It comes under the reproduction topic and elaborates on the processes in in-depth and real examples.

Basic Differences between Fragmentation and Regeneration

Regeneration Vs Fragmentation

To study the complete mechanism and Difference between fragmentation and regeneration, you should check the table below.

Fragmentation

Regeneration

Each fragment that breaks can grow into a new organism.

The process occurs when an organism’s lost limb or any other body part regrows whenever it gets cut off.

A completely new organism arises from each broken fragment.

No new organism is developed; only a part of the existing organism grows.

Few organisms can break fragments of their body and result in new organism creation.

All organisms show their regeneration capability to only some extent.

This process is possible only in those organisms which have a simple body structure and are unicellular.

This form of reproduction occurs only in organisms having complex body structures and are multi-cellular.

Fragmentation does not utilize specialized cells to multiply.

To regrow a body part, the process needs a special set of cells that helps in the proliferation and formation of a cluster of cells. This ultimately creates different combination of cells required for growth.

Only observed in invertebrates.

This type of reproduction is seen in invertebrates along with vertebrates.

Fragmentation is visible in non-vascular plants only.

Regeneration mostly occurs in animals, and not plants.

The process can occur naturally or due to the predator’s activity because it highly depends upon the complexity of the structure of an organism.

This reproduction is visible in almost all living creatures and is a result of damage to any specific body part.

Examples of fragmentation include parasite like sponges and platyhelminth like flatworms.

Some regeneration illustrations are:

The lizard’s tail (Please note -If lizards lose their hindlimb or forelimb, the regrow process does not occur)

Octopi arms

Regrowth of human blood vessels

Fragmentation and Regeneration Difference [Depending Upon Plants & Animals]

In this portion, you will get to know the major differences between regeneration and fragmentation that occur in diverse organisms.

Fragmentation in Plants & Animals

Regeneration in Plants & Animals

Occurs in fungi, cyanobacteria, sponges, sea stars, plants.

Restore or repair complete body parts, organs, cells, or tissues that are lost or have been injured.

Fragmentation - Plants

-Vegetative or asexual reproduction is a form of fragmentation that occurs in plants.

-Plants form young seedlings on the leaves; which get separated to become self-dependent plants, for example, organs like turions and bulbils.

-The method is common in plants that lack blood vessels or are non-vascular, including mosses varieties.

In plants, fragments get carried away by natural sources like air, water, etc, which land in a suitable environment and grow into a new sapling.

-It also occurs artificially by methods like layering, cutting, grafting, and division using organs like tubers, rhizomes, and corms.

-Jellyfish - Replace missing body parts but reconstructing their remaining tissues

- Some like lizards replace missing body parts by growing specialized buds of cells - known as blastema.

Fragmentation - Animals

-Takes place in annelids, flatworms, and sponges naturally.

-It is of two types - Paratomy and Architomy.

- During Architomy, fragments of an organism split into 2 parts, and both have their own tissues and organ system.

-In Paratomy, two fragments grow as separate organisms positioning their body direction in a head-to-tail manner.

-One process is compensatory hypertrophy. For example, liver of a human.

-If a specific organ’s part gets eliminated, the leftover part develops to its actual size so that there is no interference in the functioning of the organ.

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Advantages and Disadvantages of Fragmentation

Fragmentation involves the splitting of fragments of an organism which ultimately creates a new organism. This process, as a method of asexual reproduction, has both advantages and disadvantages altogether.

Benefits of Fragmentation

  • Requires only one parent, both male and female are not required for this reproduction process.
  • The cycle is easily accomplished, starting from the parent’s organism body which forms pieces, grows, and transforms finally into a new organism.
  • The method of reproduction completes in a very short period of time.
  • Being an asexual reproduction process occurs too fast.
  • From only one single parent, an entirely new era of similar organisms is being formed.
  • This form of reproduction can take place in any climatic conditions and habitat.

Drawbacks of Fragmentation

  • The main disadvantage is it results in biodiversity loss as the same individual copies are being produced.
  • The variation in genes does not occur. A similar type of gene quality, and features, of a parent, are developed in the offspring.
  • All the copies of the parent would inherit the same cons. For instance, if a parent organism is dealing with a disorder, the same will be transferred to the new generation.
  • Yielding duplicate copies will increase the struggle for survival of the particular species in case of extreme changes in surroundings. In this case, sexual reproduction is more reliable as it creates diversification and genetic variation.
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FAQs on Difference Between Fragmentation and Regeneration

What is the major difference between fragmentation and regeneration?

Fragmentation is a method of reproduction where one parent is involved and a new individual is formed from the fragments of that parent individual. But, in regeneration, only a certain part of the organism's body regrows itself. It is a recovery process for an individual to grow lost or damaged body parts.

Define Fragmentation?

Fragmentation is a part of asexual reproduction in which an organism divides itself into fragments, intentionally or unintentionally, resulting in the formation of a new organism. This reproduction process mainly occurs in unicellular organisms.

Is the formation of a new organism a major difference between fragmentation and regeneration?

The main difference between regeneration and fragmentation is that regeneration only results in growing one part of the body of an already existing organism, wherein fragmentation causes the organism to split into various fragments, which eventually grow into a new individual.

Are Fragmentation and Regeneration the same?

Both the processes are not the same, but they are a part of reproduction procedures. In fragmentation, a new organism is formed, whereas, in regeneration, no new organism is produced.

What is Regeneration?

Regeneration is a type of reproduction method that involves the regrowth of a body part of an organism. The most common example of regeneration is the tail of a lizard which grows again when it breaks or gets damaged. Only certain body parts have the ability to regenerate in specific organisms.