Definition of zygote in English:



  • A diploid cell resulting from the fusion of two haploid gametes; a fertilized ovum.

    • ‘Early embryonic development in many plants is characterized by asymmetric cell division of the zygote, which specifies apical and basal regions.’
    • ‘A brief exposure to chloroform vapors kills vegetative cells but not zygotes.’
    • ‘The fusion of egg and sperm restores the diploid chromosome number in the zygote.’
    • ‘In charophytes, the first cell division of the zygote is meiosis, and their plant body is gametophytic.’
    • ‘Those 10 frozen little 16 or 32 cell zygotes will never be used for anything else.’
    • ‘Conjugation frequencies were calculated by dividing the number of zygotes (one zygote counted as two cells) by the total number of cells present.’


Late 19th century: from Greek zugōtos yoked from zugoun to yoke.