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Ovum


/ˈōvəm/

Noun, pl. ova

1. The female reproductive haploid cell (gamete) in oogamous organisms. It is typically not capable of active movement, and it is much larger than the motile sperm cells. When it fuses with a sperm, a diploid cell (the zygote) is formed, which gradually grows into a new individual. (wikipedia.org)

2. A female gamete; female sex cell; female reproductive cell. (biology-online.org)

3. A female gamete : macrogamete; especially : a mature egg that has undergone reduction, is ready for fertilization, and takes the form of a relatively large inactive gamete providing a comparatively great amount of reserve material and contributing most of the cytoplasm of the zygote. (merriam-webster.com)

4. A mature female reproductive cell, esp. of a human or other animal, that can divide to give rise to an embryo usually only after fertilization by a male cell. (Google Dictionary)

Syn: egg cell

Word origin: From Latin ovum “egg,” cognate with Greek oon, Old Norse egg, Old English æg.


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