Sexual reproduction in flowering plants requires pollen-tube guidance, which is thought to be mediated by chemoattractants derived from target ovules. To date, however, no convincing evidence has been reported of a particular molecule being the true attractant. Emerging data indicate that two synergid cells, which are on either side of the egg cell, emit a diffusible, species-specific signal to attract the pollen tube at the last step of pollen-tube guidance. Recently, it was demonstrated that LUREs (LURE1 and LURE2), cysteine-rich polypeptides secreted from the synergid cell, are the key molecules in pollen-tube guidance. In this review, we summarize the mechanism of pollen-tube guidance, with special focus on gametophytic guidance and the attractants.
2010 by Japan Society for Cell Biology