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Trends Plant Sci. 1999 Jul;4(7):253-257.

Developmental biology of the cereal endosperm.

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Plant Molecular Biology Laboratory, Dept of Chemistry and Biotechnology, Agricultural University of Norway, PO Box 5051, N-1432 ├ůs, Norway.


The recent application of immunohistochemistry and molecular techniques has revealed that endosperm development depends on a genetic program that combines an ancient process for cellularization (similar to that seen in late Paleozoic seed ferns) with a mechanism for specifying asymmetric cell fates that has parallels to signaling processes in mammals. Progress has been further accelerated by the recent realization that the conserved nature of nuclear endosperm development extends beyond the grass species, to include dicots, such as Arabidopsis. It is anticipated that these ongoing studies will provide invaluable tools for the improvement of yield and grain quality in cereal crops.


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