Architecture and permeability of post-cytokinesis plasmodesmata lacking cytoplasmic sleeves

William J. Nicolas, Magali S. Grison, Sylvain Trépout, Amélia Gaston, Mathieu Fouché, Fabrice P. Cordelières, Karl Oparka, Jens Tilsner, Lysiane Brocard, Emmanuelle M. Bayer*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Plasmodesmata are remarkable cellular machines responsible for the controlled exchange of proteins, small RNAs and signalling molecules between cells. They are lined by the plasma membrane (PM), contain a strand of tubular endoplasmic reticulum (ER), and the space between these two membranes is thought to control plasmodesmata permeability. Here, we have reconstructed plasmodesmata three-dimensional (3D) ultrastructure with an unprecedented level of 3D information using electron tomography. We show that within plasmodesmata, ER-PM contact sites undergo substantial remodelling events during cell differentiation. Instead of being open pores, post-cytokinesis plasmodesmata present such intimate ER-PM contact along the entire length of the pores that no intermembrane gap is visible. Later on, during cell expansion, the plasmodesmata pore widens and the two membranes separate, leaving a cytosolic sleeve spanned by tethers whose presence correlates with the appearance of the intermembrane gap. Surprisingly, the post-cytokinesis plasmodesmata allow diffusion of macromolecules despite the apparent lack of an open cytoplasmic sleeve, forcing the reassessment of the mechanisms that control plant cell-cell communication.
Original languageEnglish
Article number17082
JournalNature Plants
Volume3
Issue number7
Early online date12 Jun 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2017

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