Fertilization in maize indeterminate gametophyte1 mutant

Protoplasma. 2004 Jun;223(2-4):111-20. doi: 10.1007/s00709-004-0045-7. Epub 2004 Jun 22.


Mature embryo sacs of the maize mutant indeterminate gametophyte1 displayed different cellular patterns compared to those of the wild type. About 40% of the ig1 embryo sacs contained three or more synergids and two or more egg cells at the micropylar end. During fertilization in embryo sacs with two synergids, both of them frequently degenerated and were penetrated by two pollen tubes. 75% of the embryo sacs containing three or more synergid cells were penetrated by two or more pollen tubes, although most of them had only one degenerated synergid. Multiple fusions between the sperm cells and eggs frequently occurred in the same embryo sac, which subsequently generated multiple embryos. There were two or more central cells in about 33% of ig1 embryo sacs. The largest central cell was usually adjacent to the egg apparatus and contained two unfused polar nuclei, while those extra central cells located at the chalazal end usually had a single nucleus. Fertilization occurred only between the male gamete and the largest binucleate central cell. The extra central cells eventually degenerated after fertilization.

MeSH terms

  • Fertilization / physiology*
  • Genes, Plant / genetics*
  • Mutation / genetics*
  • Plant Proteins / genetics
  • Zea mays / cytology
  • Zea mays / genetics*
  • Zea mays / physiology*


  • Plant Proteins