This work helps to better understand the genetic mechanisms through which it makes the production of fertile gametes of flowering plants. This knowledge will be useful in developing strategies for the targeted manipulation of sperm, which allows farmers to control the behavior crossing into crop plants . This work also provides new molecular tools to manipulate the plant fertility and hybrid seed production and the means to control gene flow in transgenic crops where the male contribution may need to be eliminated.Professor Twello said: Unlike animals, flowering plants does not require one, but two sperm in the sperm reproductive success Both are housed in pollen grains, which act as a vehicle to provide the sperm into a female flower.
The research identifies for the first time you turn on a battery of DUO1 genes that together govern the production of sperm and their ability to produce seeds .
A mystery in the case of this double fertilization was how each pollen grain could produce the pair of sperm needed to make seeds. Now report that the regulatory gene DUO1 turn on a battery of genes that together govern the production of sperm and their ability to fuse with the egg and central cells. So in effect DUO1 acts as a switch to provide two fertile sperm are made.
The new study is reported in the journal The Plant Cell and was funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council .
The researchers also report on the mechanism by which DUO1 turn on its target genes. Being a regulatory protein, DUO1 was shown to bind to DNA sequences that targets short near the gene, which in turn allows DUO1 to control a wide range of processes necessary for the production of sperm.
Although only 4 percent of participants reported having pre-diabetes, the researchers believe that 26 percent of adults, a figure based on the results of laboratory tests in the 2003-2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.
‘A sperm cell joins with the egg to produce the future plant or embryo, while the other will be joined by a second cell deep within the flower to produce a nutrient rich tissue called endosperm. Together, these two structures are the seeds and grains, which form the staple diet of humans and livestock throughout the world.
The results have implications for the fertility of plants, seed production – and could be used to help produce improved crops to meet food shortages. This work was also part of a doctoral thesis of the author .
Professor David Twello and colleagues at the Department of Biology, University of Leicester previously reported the discovery of a protein called DUO1 master controller that has a critical role in allowing precursor reproductive cells to divide once to form twin sperm cells. The discovery of a battery of genes regulated by DUO1 has shed light on the mechanisms by which plants control the formation of sperm and fertility.
They have discovered a gene in plants, called DUO1, acts as a switch to provide two fertile sperm are made in each grain of pollen.