Regular Paper

Journal of Plant Research

, Volume 126, Issue 4, pp 577-585

First online:

Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

Quantitative imaging of directional transport through plasmodesmata in moss protonemata via single-cell photoconversion of Dendra2

  • Munenori KitagawaAffiliated withGraduate School of Life Science, Hokkaido University
  • , Tomomichi FujitaAffiliated withDepartment of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Science, Hokkaido University Email author 


Cell-to-cell transport of molecules in plants must be properly regulated for plant growth and development. One specialized mechanism that plants have evolved involves transport through plasmodesmata (PD), but when and how transport of molecules via PD is regulated among individual cells remains largely unknown, particularly at the single-cell level. Here, we developed a tool for quantitatively analyzing cell-to-cell transport via PD at a single-cell level using protonemata of Physcomitrella patens and a photoconvertible fluorescent protein, Dendra2. In the filamentous protonemal tissues, one-dimensional intercellular communication can be observed easily. Using this system, we found that Dendra2 was directionally transported toward the apex of the growing protonemata. However, this directional transport could be eliminated by incubation in the dark or treatment with a metabolic inhibitor. Thus, we propose that directional transport of macromolecules can occur via PD in moss protonemata, and may be affected by the photosynthetic and metabolic activity of cells.


Cell-to-cell communication Dendra2 Physcomitrella patens Plasmodesmata Protonemata