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megagametophyte

[meg-uh-guh-mee-tuh-fahyt] /ˌmɛg ə gəˈmi təˌfaɪt/
noun, Botany
1.
the female gametophyte in seed plants.
Origin
1930-1935
1930-35; mega- + gametophyte
Related forms
megagametophytic
[meg-uh-guh-mee-tuh-fit-ik, -gam-i-] /ˌmɛg ə gəˌmi təˈfɪt ɪk, -ˌgæm ɪ-/ (Show IPA),
adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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megagametophytic in Science
megagametophyte
  (měg'ə-gə-mē'tə-fīt')   
The female gametophyte that develops from the megaspores of heterosporous plants. Among heterosporous species of the lycophyte plants, for example, the sporophyte plant produces megaspores stocked with food. These spores grow into megagametophytes that produce eggs. After fertilization of the eggs, the embryos grow into new sporophytes inside the megagametophyte and are nourished by the food within it. In the seed plants, the megagametophyte generation is very small and lives its entire existence within the ovules of the sporophyte plant, where some of its cells become eggs, while others become food reserves for the resultant embryos. See more at alternation of generations, gametophyte.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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