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Curr Biol. 2008 Jan 8;18(1):63-8. Epub 2007 Dec 20.

The peroxin loss-of-function mutation abstinence by mutual consent disrupts male-female gametophyte recognition.

Author information

1
Division of Biological Sciences, Cell and Developmental Biology Section and Center for Molecular Genetics, University of California, San Diego, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, California 92093-0116, USA. aboisson@biomail.ucsd.edu

Abstract

In eukaryotes, fertilization relies on complex and specialized mechanisms that achieve the precise delivery of the male gamete to the female gamete and their subsequent union [1-4]. In flowering plants, the haploid male gametophyte or pollen tube (PT) [5] carries two nonmotile sperm cells to the female gametophyte (FG) or embryo sac [6] during a long assisted journey through the maternal tissues [7-10]. In Arabidopsis, typically one PT reaches one of the two synergids of the FG (Figure 1A), where it terminates its growth and delivers the sperm cells, a poorly understood process called pollen-tube reception. Here, we report the isolation and characterization of the Arabidopsis mutant abstinence by mutual consent (amc). Interestingly, pollen-tube reception is impaired only when an amc pollen tube reaches an amc female gametophyte, resulting in pollen-tube overgrowth and completely preventing sperm discharge and the development of homozygous mutants. Moreover, we show that AMC is strongly and transiently expressed in both male and female gametophytes during fertilization and that AMC functions in gametophytes as a peroxin essential for protein import into peroxisomes. These findings show that peroxisomes play an unexpected key role in gametophyte recognition and implicate a diffusible signal emanating from either gametophyte that is required for pollen-tube discharge.

PMID:
18160292
PMCID:
PMC2278027
DOI:
10.1016/j.cub.2007.11.067
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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