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The third and final excretory organ that develops in a vertebrate embryo. In birds, reptiles, and mammals it replaces the mesonephros as the functional excretory organ and develops into the adult kidney.

[meta- + Greek nephros, kidney.]

met′a·neph′ric (-rĭk) adj.


n, pl -roi (-rɔɪ)
(Zoology) the last-formed posterior part of the embryonic kidney in reptiles, birds, and mammals, which remains functional in the adult. See also pronephros, mesonephros
[C19: New Latin, from meta- + Greek nephros kidney]


(ˌmɛt əˈnɛf rɒs)

n., pl. -roi (-roi).
an embryonic excretory organ of reptiles, birds, and mammals, which develops into the functional kidney.
[1875–80; meta- + Greek nephrós kidney]
met`a•neph′ric, adj.
References in periodicals archive ?
Moreover, the ingrowth of the branching ureteric buds into the metanephric blastema results in the characteristic lobulated appearance of the definitive kidney.
In the developing kidney, GATA3 is expressed in the ureteric bud along the branching process that gives rise to the collecting system of the definitive kidney, as well as in the glomerular mesangium and adjacent endocapillary cells.