- A female ancestral germ cell that divides several times to give rise to an oocyte that, in turn, develops into an ovum (an egg). The second "o" in oogonium is pronounced separately from the first: o·o·gon·i·um. The word was created from the prefix "oo-" (Greek oon, egg) + "gonium" (New Latin for cell) = the egg cell.
* * *1. Primitive germ cells; proliferate by mitotic division. All oogonia develop into primary oocytes prior to birth; no oogonia are present after birth. 2. In fungi, the female gametangium bearing one or more oospores. [G. oon, egg, + gone, generation]
* * *oo·go·ni·um .ō-ə-'gō-nē-əm n a descendant of a primordial germ cell that gives rise to oocytesoo·go·ni·al -nē-əl adj
* * *n. (pl. oogonia)a cell produced at an early stage in the formation of an ovum (egg cell). Primordial germ cells that have migrated to the embryonic ovary multiply to form numerous small oogonia. After the fifth month of pregnancy they enter the early stages of the first meiotic division to form the oocyte. See also oogenesis.
* * *oo·go·ni·um (o″o-goґne-əm) pl. oogoґnia [oo- + Gr. gonē generation] 1. a primordial oocyte during fetal development; it is derived from a primordial germ cell, multiplies rapidly, then becomes encapsulated in primordial follicle cells and, near the time of birth, becomes a primary oocyte by entering into prophase of the first maturation division. 2. in certain fungi and algae, the female gametangium containing one or more eggs (oospheres).
Medical dictionary. 2011.