, Volume 251, Issue 3, pp 477–488 | Cite as

Pump up the volume - a central role for the plasma membrane H+ pump in pollen germination and tube growth

  • Veronika Lang
  • Heidi Pertl-Obermeyer
  • Minou J. Safiarian
  • Gerhard ObermeyerEmail author
Review Article


The plasma membrane H+ ATPase is a member of the P-ATPase family transporting H+ from the cytosol to the extracellular space and thus energizing the plasma membrane for the uptake of ions and nutrients. As a housekeeping gene, this protein can be detected in almost every plant cell including the exclusive expression of specific isoforms in pollen grains and tubes where its activity is a prerequisite for successful germination and growth of pollen tubes. This review summarizes the current knowledge on pollen PM H+ ATPases and hypothesizes a central role for pollen-specific isoforms of this protein in tube growth. External as well as cytosolic signals from signal transduction and metabolic pathways are integrated by the PM H+ ATPase and directly translated to tube growth rates, allocating the PM H+ ATPase to an essential node in the signalling network of pollen tubes in their race to the ovule.


PM H+ ATPase Pollen Tip growth Systems biology 



Experimental work on pollen PM H+ ATPases was partially financed by a grant of the Austrian Science Fund (FWF, P21298).

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Veronika Lang
    • 1
  • Heidi Pertl-Obermeyer
    • 2
  • Minou J. Safiarian
    • 1
  • Gerhard Obermeyer
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Molecular Plant Biophysics and Biochemistry, Department of Molecular BiologyUniversity of SalzburgSalzburgAustria
  2. 2.MPI Molecular Plant PhysiologyPotsdamGermany

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