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epigenesis Syllabification: ep·i·gen·e·sis
Pronunciation: /ˌepəˈjenəsəs/

Definition of epigenesis in English:


The theory, now generally held, that an embryo develops progressively from an undifferentiated egg cell. Often contrasted with preformation.
Example sentences
  • In epigenesis, the developing organism begins in an undifferentiated state and gradually changes to a more complex state through multiple interactions.
  • He did not assume that an inert and common matter was sufficient for a plausible formulation of a theory of mechanical epigenesis.
  • Chapter 5 introduces their role in development, concluding that epigenesis is really, really complicated.


noun& adjective
Example sentences
  • While the inability to ‘look inside’ the womb may have led early scientists to favor the epigenesist view that life gradually comes into existence from inanimate matter, we simply know better today.


Mid 17th century: from epi- 'in addition' + genesis.

Definition of epigenesis in:
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