noun (plural oogonia)
1 Botany The female sex organ of certain algae and fungi, typically a rounded cell or sac containing one or more oospheres.
- ‘Oomycota’ means ‘egg fungi,’ and refers to the large round oogonia, or structures containing the female gametes, as shown in this picture of the common ‘water mold’ Saprolegnia.
- The parent also contains antheridia which produce sperm and an oogonium which produces the egg.
- Further comparison might be made between the stalked and vase-shaped vesicles found on some fossil cells with the oogonia of certain living Vaucheria species.
2 Biology An immature female reproductive cell that gives rise to primary oocytes by mitosis.
- In most crustaceans, the production of primary oocytes derived from oogonia continues throughout adult life.
- The oogonia multiply by mitosis, but early in fetal life, they enter meiosis.
- In the case of developing eggs, the diploid oogonia continue to divide mitotically for a short time in the ovary.
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