A change of developmental program induces the remodeling of the interchromatin domain during microspore embryogenesis in Brassica napus L.

Autores UPV
Revista Journal of Plant Physiology


After a stress treatment, in vitro-cultured pollen changes its normal gametophytic developmental pathway towards embryogenesis producing multicellular embryos from which, finally, haploid and double haploid plants develop. The architecture of the well-organized nuclear functional domains changes in response to DNA replication, RNA transcription, processing and transport dynamics. A number of subnuclear structures present in the interchromatin region (IR, the nuclear domain between chromosome territories) have been shown as involved, either directly or indirectly, in transcriptional regulation. These structures include the interchromatin granule clusters (IGCs), perichromatin fibrils (PFs), Cajal bodies (CBs) and perichromatin granules (PGs). In this work, we present a cytochemical, immunocytochemical, quantitative and morphometric analysis at the light, confocal and electron microscopy levels to characterize the changes in the functional architecture of the nuclear interchromatin domain during two developmental programs followed by the microspore: differentiation to mature pollen grains (transcriptionally inactive), and microspore embryogenesis involving proliferation in the first stages (highly engaged in transcription). Our results revealed characteristic changes in size, shape and distribution of the different interchromatin structures as a consequence of the reprogramming of the microspore, allowing us to relate the remodeling of the interchromatin domain to the variations in transcriptional activities during proliferation and differentiation events, and suggesting that RNA-associated structures could be a regulatory mechanism in the process. In addition, we document the presence of two structurally different types of CBs, and of IGC and CB-associated regions, similar to those present in animal cells, and not yet described in plants. © 2010 Elsevier GmbH.