[ par-thuh-noh-jen-uh-sis ]
See synonyms for: parthenogenesisparthenogenetic on

  1. development of an egg without fertilization.

Origin of parthenogenesis

First recorded in 1840–50; partheno- + genesis

Other words from parthenogenesis

  • par·the·no·ge·net·ic [pahr-thuh-noh-juh-net-ik], /ˌpɑr θə noʊ dʒəˈnɛt ɪk/, adjective
  • par·the·no·ge·net·i·cal·ly, adverb Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use parthenogenesis in a sentence

  • He has at present seven parthenogenetic frogs over a year old, produced by merely puncturing the eggs with a fine needle (Fig. 6).

British Dictionary definitions for parthenogenesis


/ (ˌpɑːθɪnəʊˈdʒɛnɪsɪs) /

  1. a type of reproduction, occurring in some insects and flowers, in which the unfertilized ovum develops directly into a new individual

  2. human conception without fertilization by a male; virgin birth

Origin of parthenogenesis

C19: from Greek parthenos virgin + genesis birth

Derived forms of parthenogenesis

  • parthenogenetic (ˌpɑːθɪˌnəʊdʒɪˈnɛtɪk), adjective
  • parthenogenetically, adverb

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Scientific definitions for parthenogenesis


[ pär′thə-nō-jĕnĭ-sĭs ]

  1. Reproduction in which an egg develops into a new individual without being fertilized. Aphids and certain other insects can reproduce by parthenogenesis. Parthenogenesis does not necessarily produce clones of the parent. Among hymenopterans such as honeybees and ants, the haploid males develop from unfertilized eggs laid by the queen, who is diploid. Parthenogenesis is a form of apomixis.

Other words from parthenogenesis

  • parthenogenetic adjective (pär′thə-nō-jə-nĕtĭk)

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.