Nuclear Size and DNA Content of the Embryo and Endosperm During their Initial Stages of Development in Glycine max (Fabaceae)

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1993-10-01
Authors
Chamberlin, Mark
Horner, Harry
Palmer, Reid
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Agronomy
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Botany
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A technique was developed for isolating embryo sacs from ovules of soybean and for separating embryo from endosperm. Image analysis and cytophotometry were used to determine the relative mass of DNA and size of nuclei of endosperm and embryo cells. Analyses were done at the globular through late heart-shaped embryo stages to correlate ploidy level or nuclear size, and differentiation in these tissues. Mean size of embryo nuclei was fairly constant through all stages studied. Ploidy condition of the embryo was stable, 950/o99% of the nuclei were distributed in a bipolar pattern by relative mass at 2C and 4C. Few embryo nuclei (3%) had ploidy levels above 4C at the late heart-shaped embryo stage. Variability in size ofendosperm nuclei seemed correlated with the morphological state of these nuclei (free-nuclear vs. cellular). Most endosperm cells did not show significant polyploidy with 840/o-92% of nuclei in the expected 3C-6C range, but some nuclei with elevated ploidy levels were noted during endosperm cellularization. Endosperm senescence was correlated with nuclear DNA loss over time. Polyploidy seems to have no direct role in the early differentiation of the soybean embryo and endosperm, but these stable conditions may be necessary for the early establishment of the embryo.

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This article is from American Journal of Botany 80 (1993): 1209.

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