spermatozoon

[ spur-mat-uh-zoh-uh n, -on, spur-muh-tuh- ]
/ spɜrˌmæt əˈzoʊ ən, -ɒn, ˌspɜr mə tə- /
|

noun, plural sper·mat·o·zo·a [spur-mat-uh-zoh-uh, spur-muh-tuh-] /spɜrˌmæt əˈzoʊ ə, ˌspɜr mə tə-/. Cell Biology.

one of the minute, usually actively motile gametes in semen, which serve to fertilize the ovum; a mature male reproductive cell.

Nearby words

  1. spermatorrhoea,
  2. spermatotoxic,
  3. spermatotoxin,
  4. spermatozoa,
  5. spermatozoid,
  6. spermaturia,
  7. spermi-,
  8. spermic,
  9. spermicide,
  10. spermidine

Origin of spermatozoon

From New Latin, dating back to 1830–40; see origin at spermato-, -zoon

Related formssper·mat·o·zo·al, sper·mat·o·zo·an, sper·mat·o·zo·ic, adjective

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for spermatozoa



British Dictionary definitions for spermatozoa

spermatozoon

/ (ˌspɜːmətəʊˈzəʊɒn) /

noun plural -zoa (-ˈzəʊə)

any of the male reproductive cells released in the semen during ejaculation, consisting of a flattened egg-shaped head, a long neck, and a whiplike tail by which it moves to fertilize the female ovumAlso called: sperm, zoosperm
Derived Formsspermatozoal, spermatozoan or spermatozoic, adjective

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

Word Origin and History for spermatozoa
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for spermatozoa

spermatozoon

[ spər-măt′ə-zōŏn′, -ən, spûr′mə-tə- ]

n. pl. sper•mat•o•zo•a (-zōə)

The mature male gamete or sex cell that consists of a cylindrical nucleated cell with a short neck and a thin motile tail, contains genetic information to be transmitted by the male, exhibits autokinesia, and is able to effect zygosis with an ovum; sperm.
Related formssper•mat′o•zoal (-zōəl) null null adj.


The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for spermatozoa

spermatozoon

[ spər-măt′ə-zōŏn′ ]

Plural spermatozoa

A sperm cell produced in the testis of an animal.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.