Intracellular Motility and the Evolution of the Actin Cytoskeleton during Development of the Male Gametophyte of Wheat (Triticum aestivum L.)
The uniaperturate pollen of wheat is dispersed in a partially hydrated condition. Amyloplasts are concentrated in the apertural hemisphere where they surround the two sperms, while vigorously moving polysaccharide-containing wall precursor bodies (P-particles) together with the vegetative nucleus occupy the other. This disposition is the product of a post-meiotic developmental sequence apparently peculiar to the grasses. During vacuolation of the spore after release from the tetrad, the nucleus is displaced to the pole of the cell opposite the site of the germination aperture, already defined in the tetrad. Following pollen mitosis, the vegetative nucleus migrates along the wall of the vegetative cell towards the aperture, leaving the generative cell at the opposite pole isolated by a callose wall. As the vacuole is resorbed, the generative cell rounds up, loses its wall and follows the vegetative nucleus, passing along the wall of the vegetative cell towards the aperture where it eventually divides to produce the two sperms. Throughout this period of nucleus and cell manoeuvrings, minor inclusions of the vegetative cell cytoplasm-including mitochondria, lipid globuli and developing amyloplasts-move randomly. Coordinated vectorial movement begins after the main period of starch accumulation, when the amyloplasts migrate individually into the apertural hemisphere of the grain, a final redistribution betokening the attainment of germinability. In the present paper we correlate aspects of the evolution of the actin cytoskeleton with these events in the developing grain, and relate the observations to published evidence from another monocotyledonous species concerning the timing of the expression of actin genes during male gametophyte development, as revealed in the synthesis of actin mRNA.
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London Series B
- Pub Date:
- December 1997