Definition of Meiosis

1. Noun. (genetics) cell division that produces reproductive cells in sexually reproducing organisms; the nucleus divides into four nuclei each containing half the chromosome number (leading to gametes in animals and spores in plants).

Exact synonyms: Miosis, Reduction Division
Category relationships: Genetic Science, Genetics
Terms within: Anaphase, Cytokinesis, Karyokinesis, Metaphase, Prophase, Segregation, Telophase
Generic synonyms: Cell Division, Cellular Division
Specialized synonyms: Nondisjunction
Derivative terms: Meiotic

2. Noun. Understatement for rhetorical effect (especially when expressing an affirmative by negating its contrary). "Saying `I was not a little upset' when you mean `I was very upset' is an example of litotes"
Exact synonyms: Litotes
Generic synonyms: Understatement, Rhetorical Device

Definition of Meiosis

1. n. Diminution; a species of hyperbole, representing a thing as being less than it really is.

Definition of Meiosis

1. Noun. (countable rhetoric) A figure of speech whereby something is made to seem smaller or less important than it actually is. ¹

2. Noun. (uncountable cytology) Cell division of a diploid cell into four haploid cells, which develop to produce (gametes). ¹

¹ Source:

Definition of Meiosis

1. a type of cell division [n -OSES] : MEIOTIC [adj]

Medical Definition of Meiosis

1. A specialised form of nuclear division in which there two successive nuclear divisions (meiosis I and II) without any chromosome replication between them. Each division can be divided into 4 phases similar to those of mitosis pro, meta, ana and telophase). Meiosis reduces the starting number of 4n chromosomes in the parent cell to n in each of the 4 daughter cells. Each cell receives only one of each homologous chromosome pair, with the maternal and paternal chromosomes being distributed randomly between the cells. This is vital for the segregation of genes. During the prophase of meiosis I (classically divided into stages: Leptotene, Zygotene, Pachytene, Diplotene and Diakinesis), homologous chromosomes pair to form bivalents, thus allowing crossing over, the physical exchange of chromatid segments. This results in the recombination of genes. Meiosis occurs during the formation of gametes in animals, which are thus haploid and fertilization gives a diploid egg. In plants meiosis leads to the formation of the spore by the sporophyte generation. This entry appears with permission from the Dictionary of Cell and Molecular Biology (11 Mar 2008)

Meiosis Pictures

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Lexicographical Neighbors of Meiosis

meiosis (current term)
meiotic division
meiotic drive
meiotic nondisjunction
meiotic phase
meiotic spindle

Literary usage of Meiosis

Below you will find example usage of this term as found in modern and/or classical literature:

1. Statistical Inference from Genetic Data on Pedigrees by Elizabeth A. Thompson (2000)
"1.2 Mendel's laws and meiosis indicators Mendel's First Law (1866) states that each individual has two "factors" (or genes) controlling a given ..."

2. Whole Life Cycle of Chromosomes and Their Coiling Systems: Transactions, APS by L. R. Cleveland (2008)
"Except in a few primitive types of meiosis, which I am describing in later ... Is it possible in meiosis I that the failure of the centromere to duplicate ..."

3. The Encyclopaedia Britannica: “a” Dictionary of Arts, Sciences, Literature edited by Hugh Chisholm (1911)
"It can only be inferred that alternation of generations is not absolutely dependent upon the* periodic halving in meiosis and the subsequent doubling by a ..."

4. The Might and Mirth of Literature: A Treatise on Figurative Language. In by John Walker Vilant Macbeth (1876)
"Thc Bull, usually called Irish. —Repetition: Seventeen Varieties. — Translation from the German, by the Author. LXII. LITOTES, meiosis, or Lessening ..."

5. A Manual of the Art of Prose Composition: For the Use of Colleges and Schools by John Mitchell Bonnell (1867)
"APOSTROPHE—INTERROGATION—INNUENDO—meiosis. § 482. In the four figures thus grouped together, the opposition to the literal truth is oblique, and not direct. ..."

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