isogamy

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isogamy

(īsŏg`əmē), in biology, a condition in which the sexual cells, or gametes, are of the same form and size and are usually indistinguishable from each other. Many algaealgae
[plural of Lat. alga=seaweed], a large and diverse group of primarily aquatic plantlike organisms. These organisms were previously classified as a primitive subkingdom of the plant kingdom, the thallophytes (plants that lack true roots, stems, leaves, and flowers).
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 and some fungiFungi
, kingdom of heterotrophic single-celled, multinucleated, or multicellular organisms, including yeasts, molds, and mushrooms. The organisms live as parasites, symbionts, or saprobes (see saprophyte).
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 have isogamous gametes. In most sexual reproduction, as in mammals for example, the ovum is quite larger and of different appearance than the sperm cell. This condition is called anisogamy.

Isogamy

 

a type of sexual process in which the merging (copulating) gametes are morphologically identical.

Isogamy is common among algae, lower fungi, and many protozoans (Rhizopoda, Radiolaria, and lower Gregarinida) but absent in multicellular animals. In isogamy the copulating gametes differ in their biochemical and physiological properties.

isogamy

[ī′säg·ə·mē]
(biology)
Sexual reproduction by union of gametes or individuals of similar form or structure.