Definition of leptotene in English:



mass nounBiology
  • The first stage of the prophase of meiosis, during which each chromosome becomes visible as two fine threads (chromatids).

    • ‘Early meiotic stages, leptotene or zygotene, were observed.’
    • ‘That association presumably assists in pairing and is later lost during leptotene and replaced with a loose bouquet formation in zygotene.’
    • ‘Early recombination nodules are protein complexes 100 nm in diameter that are associated with forming synaptonemal complexes during leptotene and zygotene of meiosis.’
    • ‘The bouquet forms at late leptotene and early zygotene and is coincident with chromosome pairing.’


Early 20th century: from lepto- ‘narrow, fine’ + Greek tainia ‘band, ribbon’.