noun, plural blastemas, blastemata [bla-stee-muh-tuh] . Embryology.
an aggregation of cells in an early embryo, capable of differentiation into specialized tissue and organs.

1840–50; < Neo-Latin < Greek blástēma (blastē- verbid stem of blasteîn to sprout + -ma noun suffix denoting result of action)

blastemal, blastematic [blas-tuh-mat-ik] , blastemic [bla-stee-mik, -steem-ik] , adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
blastema (blæˈstiːmə)
n , pl -mas, -mata
a mass of undifferentiated animal cells that will develop into an organ or tissue: present at the site of regeneration of a lost part
[C19: from New Latin, from Greek: offspring, from blastos bud]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

blastema blas·te·ma (blā-stē'mə)

  1. The formative, undifferentiated material from which cells are formed.

  2. A mass of embryonic cells from which an organ or a body part develops, either in normal development or in the regeneration of a lost body part.

blas·te'mal or blas'te·mat'ic (blās'tə-māt'ĭk) or blas·te'mic (blā-stē'mĭk) adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
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Encyclopedia Britannica


in zoology, a mass of undifferentiated cells that has the capability to develop into an organ or an appendage. In lower vertebrates the blastema is particularly important in the regeneration of severed limbs. In the salamander, for example, tissues in the stump of a limb dedifferentiate-that is, they lose their individual characteristics-and revert to an embryonic appearance. Under the influence of regenerating nerve fibres, they will form a blastema, a mound of cells resembling the original limb bud, from which the replacement limb gradually emerges.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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