MAP Kinases in Pollen

  • Cathal Wilson
  • Erwin Heberle-Bors
Part of the Results and Problems in Cell Differentiation book series (RESULTS, volume 27)


The male gametophyte of flowering plants has a highly regulated developmental programme to ensure efficient fertilization of the ovule and the faithful transmission of genetic material to the offspring. Cell cycle control mechanisms dictate the formation of the vegatative and generative (sperm) cells, while an increase in transcriptional/translational activity and the accumulation of stored proteins and mRNA is followed by a quiescent state at maturation. A switch to a new developmental programme occurs after the pollen tube lands on the stigma with the formation of the pollen tube, growth through the style, and subsequent fertilization. Apart from the internal control mechanisms involved in this developmental programme, pollen grains must cope with physical changes during development within the anther (desiccation) and subsequently during germination on the stigma (rehydration). The metabolic and structural changes that occur throughout these processes should require signaling mechanisms to co-ordinate the appropriate response, and recent data demonstrate the presence in pollen of an array of molecules belonging to diverse signalling pathways, including mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinases. The role of MAP kinases in pollen is discussed in the context of the various developmental and physical changes that occur throughout pollen maturation and germination.


Pollen Tube Pollen Development Pollen Germination Mature Pollen Regulatory Volume Decrease 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cathal Wilson
    • 1
  • Erwin Heberle-Bors
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Microbiology and Genetics, Vienna BiocenterUniversity of ViennaViennaAustria

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