alexa A Morphogenetic Model Accounting for Pollen Aperture Pattern in Flowering Plants.
Bioinformatics & Systems Biology

Bioinformatics & Systems Biology

Journal of Computer Science & Systems Biology

Author(s): Ressayre A, Godelle B, Mignot A, Gouyon PH

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Abstract Pollen grains are embeddded in an extremely resistant wall. Apertures are well defined places where the pollen wall is reduced or absent that permit pollen tube germination. Pollen grains are produced by meiosis and aperture number definition appears to be linked with the partition that follows meiosis and leads to the formation of a tetrad of four haploid microspores. In dicotyledonous plants, meiosis is simultaneous which means that cytokinesis occurs once the two nuclear divisions are completed. A syncitium with the four nuclei stemming from meiosis is formed and cytokinesis isolates simulataneously the four products of meiosis. We propose a theoretical morphogenetic model which takes into account part of the features of the ontogeny of the pollen grains. The nuclei are considered as attractors acting upon a morphogenetic substance distributed within the cytoplasm of the dividing cell. This leads to a partition of the volume of the cell in four domains that is similar to the observations of cytokinesis in the studied species. The most widespread pattern of aperture distribution in dicotyledonous plants (three apertures equidistributed on the pollen grain equator) can be explained by bipolar interactions between nuclei stemming from the second meiotic division, and observed variations on these patterns by disturbances of these interactions. In numerous plant species, several pollen grains differing in aperture number are produced by a single individual. The distribution of the different morphs within tetrads indicates that the four daughter cells can have different aperture number. The model provides an explanation for the duplication of one of the apertures of a three-aperture pollen grain leading to a four-aperture one and in parallel it gives an explanation for how heterogeneous tetrads can be formed.Copyright 1998 Academic Press This article was published in J Theor Biol and referenced in Journal of Computer Science & Systems Biology

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