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Cytogenet Genome Res. 2005;109(1-3):166-74.

Differentiating plant cells switched to proliferation remodel the functional organization of nuclear domains.

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Centro de Investigaciones Biológicas (CSIC), Madrid, Spain.


The immature pollen grain, the microspore, under stress conditions can switch its developmental program towards proliferation and embryogenesis. The comparison between the gametophytic and sporophytic pathways followed by the microspore permitted us to analyse the nuclear changes in plant differentiating cells when switched to proliferation. The nucleus is highly dynamic, the architecture of its well organised functional domains--condensed chromatin, interchromatin region, nuclear bodies and nucleolus--changing in response to DNA replication, RNA transcription, processing and transport. In the present work, the rearrangements of the nuclear domains during the switch to proliferation have been determined by in situ molecular identification methods for the subcellular localization of chromatin at different functional states, rDNA, elements of the nuclear machinery (PCNA, splicing factors), signalling and stress proteins. The study of the changes in the nuclear domains was determined by a correlative approach at confocal and electron microscopy levels. The results showed that the switch of the developmental program and the activation of the proliferative activity affected the functional organization of the nuclear domains, which accordingly changed their architecture and functional state. A redistribution of components, among them various signalling molecules which targeted structures within the interchromatin region upon translocation from the cytoplasm, was also observed.

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