The Mysterious Tip-Vesicles in Germinating Pollen Tube
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AbstractFertilization in flowering plants happens through pollination. The pollen grain, upon
germination on a receptive stigma, carrying the sperm cells to the embryo sac (Cheung et al.,
2010). Interestingly, the polarized pollen tube growth is characterized by abundant vesicles
important for both endocytosis and exocytosis (Grebnev et al., 2017). However, the nature,
identity and specific function of these highly dynamic vesicles remain elusive. To address these
questions, we will carry out ultrastructural and biochemical studies on growing pollen tube.
First, we will study the nature and types of tip-region vesicles using 3D electron tomography
(ET) analysis on pollen tube samples prepared by high pressure freezing-freeze substitution
according to our well-established procedures in root cells (Zhuang et al., 2017; Cui et al., 2019).
Second, we will investigate the possible roles of distinct vesicles in endocytosis and exocytosis.
The results based on the ET analysis on Vesicles-PM (plasma membrane) relationship will
explain the fusion events in the tip region. Third, we will develop protocols to purify vesicles
from the tip regions of germinating pollen tubes for subsequent protein analysis using Tandem
Mass Spectrometry. The purification and identification of purified vesicles will be further
confirmed by regular transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and cryo-EM examination.
Last, a novel monoclonal antibody library will be generated and screened from the protein
epitopes extracted from the purified vesicles for subsequent cellular biology study. Overall,
this study will provide new insights into the manipulation of fast-growing single-cell system
through the understanding of the biological function of tip-vesicles during pollen tube growth.
This work is supported by Research Grants Council of Hong Kong (CUHK14100818, C4011-
14R, C4012-16E, C4002-17G and AoE/M-05/12), CUHK and NSFC.
All Author(s) ListZhiqi Liu, Kenneth Cheung, Liwen Jiang
Name of ConferenceThe 18th International Workshop on Plant Membrane Biology (IWPMB2019)
Start Date of Conference07/07/2019
End Date of Conference12/07/2019
Place of ConferenceGlasgow
Country/Region of ConferenceOthers
Year2019
LanguagesEnglish-United Kingdom

Last updated on 2020-05-06 at 15:12