Original Article


, Volume 232, Issue 3, pp 677-689

First online:

Temporal and spatial changes in cell wall composition in developing grains of wheat cv. Hereward

  • G. A. TooleAffiliated withInstitute of Food Research, Norwich Research Park
  • , G. Le GallAffiliated withInstitute of Food Research, Norwich Research Park
  • , I. J. ColquhounAffiliated withInstitute of Food Research, Norwich Research Park
  • , C. NemethAffiliated withRothamsted Research
  • , L. SaulnierAffiliated withINRA UR1268 Biopolymers, Interactions Assemblies
  • , A. LovegroveAffiliated withRothamsted Research
  • , T. PellnyAffiliated withRothamsted Research
  • , M. D. WilkinsonAffiliated withRothamsted Research
  • , J. FreemanAffiliated withRothamsted Research
    • , R. A. C. MitchellAffiliated withRothamsted Research
    • , E. N. C. MillsAffiliated withInstitute of Food Research, Norwich Research Park
    • , P. R. ShewryAffiliated withRothamsted Research Email author 

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A combination of enzyme mapping, FT-IR microscopy and NMR spectroscopy was used to study temporal and spatial aspects of endosperm cell wall synthesis and deposition in developing grain of bread wheat cv. Hereward. This confirmed previous reports that changes in the proportions of the two major groups of cell wall polysaccharides occur, with β-glucan accumulating earlier in development than arabinoxylan. Changes in the structure of the arabinoxylan occurred, with decreased proportions of disubstituted xylose residues and increased proportions of monosubstituted xylose residues. These are likely to result, at least in part, from arabinoxylan restructuring catalysed by enzymes such as arabinoxylan arabinofurano hydrolase and lead to changes in cell wall mechanical properties which may be required to withstand stresses during grain maturation and desiccation.


Arabinoxylan Cell wall Dietary fibre β-Glucan Wheat grain