Abolition of the tapetum suicide program ruins microsporogenesis

Takahiro Kawanabe, Tohru Ariizumi, Maki Kawai-Yamada, Hirofumi Uchimiya, Kinya Toriyama

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

119 Citations (Scopus)


Microsporogenesis in angiosperms takes places within the anther. Microspores are surrounded by a layer of cells, the tapetum, which degenerates during the later stages of pollen development with cytological features characteristic of programmed cell death (PCD). We report herein that the expression of AtBI-1, which suppresses Bax-induced cell death, in the tapetum at the tetrad stage inhibits tapetum degeneration and subsequently results in pollen abortion, while activation of AtBI-1 at the later stage does not. Our results demonstrate that the PCD signal commences at the tetrad stage and that the proper timing of PCD in the tapetum is essential for normal microsporogenesis. JSPP

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)784-787
Number of pages4
JournalPlant and Cell Physiology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Jun


  • Arabidopsis thaliana
  • Microsporogenesis
  • Pollen development
  • Programmed cell death
  • Tapetum


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