During the first stages of development, flowers of most dioecious species are hermaphroditic, with their transition to unisexual flowers being the result of the developmental arrest of one set of reproductive organs. In this work, we describe the development of male and female flowers of the dioecious wild grape species Vitis vinifera ssp. silvestris through scanning electron microscopy analysis and cytological observations, focusing our attention on the transition from bisexual to unisexual development. We divide floral development of the wild grape into eight stages. Differences between male and female flowers appear first at stage 6, when the style and stigma start to differentiate in female but not in male flowers. Cytological analysis of the slowly growing abortive pistil of male flowers shows that megagametophyte formation is, surprisingly, not inhibited. Instead of pistil abortion in the male flower, sexual determination is accomplished through programmed death of external nucellus cells and some layers of integumentary cells. Sterility of male structures in female flowers follows a different pattern, with microspore abnormalities evident from the time of their release from the tetrad. Sterile microspores and pollen grains in female flowers display an abnormal round shape, lacking colpi and possessing uniformly thickened cell walls that impede germination.

The arrest of development of abortive reproductive organs in the unisexual flower of Vitis vinifera ssp. silvestris / E. CAPORALI, A. SPADA, G. MARZIANI, O. FAILLA, A. SCIENZA. - In: SEXUAL PLANT REPRODUCTION. - ISSN 0934-0882. - 15:6(2003), pp. 291-300.

The arrest of development of abortive reproductive organs in the unisexual flower of Vitis vinifera ssp. silvestris

E. CAPORALI;A. SPADA;G. MARZIANI;O. FAILLA;A. SCIENZA
2003

Abstract

During the first stages of development, flowers of most dioecious species are hermaphroditic, with their transition to unisexual flowers being the result of the developmental arrest of one set of reproductive organs. In this work, we describe the development of male and female flowers of the dioecious wild grape species Vitis vinifera ssp. silvestris through scanning electron microscopy analysis and cytological observations, focusing our attention on the transition from bisexual to unisexual development. We divide floral development of the wild grape into eight stages. Differences between male and female flowers appear first at stage 6, when the style and stigma start to differentiate in female but not in male flowers. Cytological analysis of the slowly growing abortive pistil of male flowers shows that megagametophyte formation is, surprisingly, not inhibited. Instead of pistil abortion in the male flower, sexual determination is accomplished through programmed death of external nucellus cells and some layers of integumentary cells. Sterility of male structures in female flowers follows a different pattern, with microspore abnormalities evident from the time of their release from the tetrad. Sterile microspores and pollen grains in female flowers display an abnormal round shape, lacking colpi and possessing uniformly thickened cell walls that impede germination.
Dioecious flower formation · Programmed cell death · Sexual differentiation · Unisexual flower sterility · Vitis vinifera ssp. silvestris
Settore BIO/01 - Botanica Generale
Settore AGR/03 - Arboricoltura Generale e Coltivazioni Arboree
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2434/12115
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