[spur-mat-uh-zoh-uh n, -on, spur-muh-tuh-]
- one of the minute, usually actively motile gametes in semen, which serve to fertilize the ovum; a mature male reproductive cell.
Origin of spermatozoon
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
- 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
Word Origin and History for spermatozoon
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
spermatozoon(spər-măt′ə-zō′ŏn′, -ən, spûr′mə-tə-)
- 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.
- 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.