, Volume 122, Issue 1-2, pp 11-26

Experimental studies on the function of the cortical cytoplasmic zone of the preprophase microtubule band

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Centrifugation of young seedlings ofTriticum durum andTriticum aestivum for 8–10 hours at 1,500–2,000 x g causes a serious disorder of the spatial organelle relationships in the interphase as well as the preprophase and mitotic subsidiary cell mother cells (SMCs). The nucleus, most organelles and cytoplasm are displaced to the centrifugal end of the cell, while the vacuoles lie at the other end. However, after centrifugation, the preprophase microtubule bands (PMBs) are nucleated and remain at the expected position close to the guard cell mother cells (GMCs). In some elongated SMCs the PMBs become completely separated from the nucleus. The mitotic spindle exhibits variable orientation and is usually formed at some distance from the PMB cortical zone.

Cytokinesis in SMCs is spatially highly disturbed and the cell plate shows a variety of unpredictable dispositions, which seem to be determined by: 1. the position of the preprophase-prophase nucleus and the orientation of the mitotic spindle as well as their spatial relationships to the PMB cortical zone, and 2. the space available for cell plate growth. Many of the daughter cells exhibit a highly variable shape and size in different planes. Usually one edge of the cell plate partly or totally joins the anticlinal parent wall adjacent to the PMB cortical zone.

In some SMCs ofZea mays andTriticum aestivum, the junction regions of the periclinal walls with the anticlinal ones, lined by the PMB cortical zone in normal SMCs, are detectably thickened after the arrest of mitosis and the prevention of interphase microtubule formation by a prolonged colchicine treatment. In a small number of protodermal cells of the same plants, participating in the development of stomatal complexes, irregular wall bodies or incomplete wall sheets were formed at wall regions lined by the PMB cortical zone.

The presented observations are in line with the following hypotheses: 1. the PMB cortical zone interacts with the growing edges of the cell plate “attracting” it to fuse with the underlying parent wall when the latter approaches the former at a critical distance, and 2. in SMCs particular regions of the PMB cortical zone and/or the adjacent plasmalemma promote the local wall deposition in the absence of microtubules.