Plant cell reports

Anther-preferential expressing gene PMR is essential for the mitosis of pollen development in rice.

PMID 28299429


Phenotype identification, expression examination, and function prediction declared that the anther-preferential expressing gene PMR may participate in regulation of male gametophyte development in rice. Male germline development in flowering plants produces the pair of sperm cells for double fertilization and the pollen mitosis is a key process of it. Although the structural features of male gametophyte have been defined, the molecular mechanisms regulating the mitotic cell cycle are not well elucidated in rice. Here, we reported an anther-preferential expressing gene in rice, PMR (Pollen Mitosis Relative), playing an essential role in male gametogenesis. When PMR gene was suppressed via RNAi, the mitosis of microspore was severely damaged, and the plants formed unmatured pollens containing only one or two nucleuses at the anthesis, ultimately leading to serious reduction of pollen fertility and seed-setting. The CRISPR mutants, pmr-1 and pmr-2, both showed the similar defects as the PMR-RNAi lines. Further analysis revealed that PMR together with its co-expressing genes were liable to participate in the regulation of DNA metabolism in the nucleus, and affected the activities of some enzymes related to the cell cycle. We finally discussed that unknown protein PMR contained the PHD, SWIB and Plus-3 domains and they might have coordinating functions in regulation pathway of the pollen mitosis in rice.