Mitosis occurs in almost all cells in plants and animals. It begins in the nucleus of the cell. As neurons become specialized (terminal differentiation) mitosis is switched off, so the cells can no longer reproduce.
When cells undergo mitosis, the end result is two genetically identical daughter cells. Any genetic mutations are random. By contrast, meiosis is a process that occurs in germ cells in the male and female gonads of plants and animals. Meiosis yields two haploid daughter cells that are not identical to the parent. Unlike mitosis, cells that undergo meiosis go through a crossing over phase where genetic material is exchanged between chromosomes. This results in genetic variation.