Functional pollen is needed to successfully complete fertilization. Pollen is formed inside the anthers following a specific sequence of developmental stages, from microsporocyte meiosis to pollen release, that concerns microsporocytes/microspores and anther wall tissues. The processes involved may not be synchronous within a flower, an anther, and even a microsporangium. Asynchrony has been barely analyzed, and its biological consequences have not been yet assessed. In this review, different processes of pollen development and lifetime, stressing on the possible consequences of their differential timing on pollen performance, are summarized. Development is usually synchronized until microsporocyte meiosis I (occasionally until meiosis II). Afterwards, a period of mostly asynchronous events extends up to anther opening as regards: (1) meiosis II (sometimes); (2) microspore vacuolization and later reduction of vacuoles; (3) amylogenesis, amylolysis, and carbohydrate inter-conversion; (4) the first haploid mitosis; and (5) intine formation. Asynchrony would promote metabolic differences among developing microspores and therefore physiologically heterogeneous pollen grains within a single microsporangium. Asynchrony would increase the effect of competition for resources during development and pollen tube growth and also for water during (re)hydration on the stigma. The differences generated by developmental asynchronies may have an adaptive role since more efficient pollen grains would be selected with regard to homeostasis, desiccation tolerance, resilience, speed of (re)hydration, and germination. The performance of each pollen grain which landed onto the stigma will be the result of a series of selective steps determined by its development, physiological state at maturity, and successive environmental constrains.
|Titolo:||It is a matter of timing: asynchrony during pollen development and its consequences on pollen performance in angiosperms—a review|
|Citazione:||Carolina, C.G., Nepi, M., & Pacini, E. (2017). It is a matter of timing: asynchrony during pollen development and its consequences on pollen performance in angiosperms—a review. PROTOPLASMA, 254(1), 57-73.|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|