In Arabidopsis thaliana, cell fate in developing ovules is determined by the action of the homeodomain factor BELL1 (BEL1) and of the MADS-box factors SEEDSTICK (STK), SHATTERPROOF1 (SHP1) and SHP2. The analysis of the bel1 and the stk shp1 shp2 mutants revealed that the functional megaspore is formed, however, it does not proceed into megagametogenesis. In the bel1 stk shp1 shp2, quadruple mutant megasporogenesis does not take place. In this article we describe a detailed morphological analysis of the quadruple mutant, and we discuss the possibility that BELL1, STK, SHP1 and SHP2 not only control integument identity determination and development, but that they might also play a role during megasporogenesis.
- Arabidopsis thaliana, MADS-box genes, ovule development, megasporogenesis, megagametogenesis