- Explaining the ovulation process
- Knowing the necessary steps which lead to spermatozoa being ready
- Describing how the enabling of the spermatozoa takes place
- Describing how the spermatozoon penetrates into the oocyte
- Knowing the process whereby a zygote is formed
What you should already know
- How the female genital tract is formed (anatomy)
- Development of the oocyte in the ovary
- How the male genital tract is formed (anatomy)
- When the spermatozoon leaves the testicle it is not yet capable of fertilizing an oocyte. What changes must it undergo to make it capable of uniting with the oocyte (capacitation)?
- How does the oocyte get from the ovary into the fallopian tube?
- What makes it possible for the spermatozoon to penetrate into the oocyte?
- How is it made sure that a spermatozoon from another species is unable to deposit its genetic material?
- When the fertilization is completed, the genes of the two parents have united. How does this union of the two genomes take place?
For successful fertilization, a mature spermatozoon (sperm cell) must penetrate into the mature oocyte. At the same time this is also an encounter between one of the smallest human cells with one of the largest: The head of the sperm has a diameter of only 4µm, whereas the egg cell has one of 120µm (0.12 mm!) aufweist
One can speak of a successful fertilization when the genetic material of the male spermatozoon has united with that of the female oocyte thereby creating a new, unique individual.