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      Chemical Analysis of Pollen by FT-Raman and FTIR Spectroscopies


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          Pollen studies are important for the assessment of present and past environment, including biodiversity, sexual reproduction of plants and plant-pollinator interactions, monitoring of aeroallergens, and impact of climate and pollution on wild communities and cultivated crops. Although information on chemical composition of pollen is of importance in all of those research areas, pollen chemistry has been rarely measured due to complex and time-consuming analyses. Vibrational spectroscopies, coupled with multivariate data analysis, have shown great potential for rapid chemical characterization, identification and classification of pollen. This study, comprising 219 species from all principal taxa of seed plants, has demonstrated that high-quality Raman spectra of pollen can be obtained by Fourier transform (FT) Raman spectroscopy. In combination with Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), FT-Raman spectroscopy is obtaining comprehensive information on pollen chemistry. Presence of all the main biochemical constituents of pollen, such as proteins, lipids, carbohydrates, carotenoids and sporopollenins, have been identified and detected in the spectra, and the study shows approaches to measure relative and absolute content of these constituents. The results show that FT-Raman spectroscopy has clear advantage over standard dispersive Raman measurements, in particular for measurement of pollen samples with high pigment content. FT-Raman spectra are strongly biased toward chemical composition of pollen wall constituents, namely sporopollenins and pigments. This makes Raman spectra complementary to FTIR spectra, which over-represent chemical constituents of the grain interior, such as lipids and carbohydrates. The results show a large variability in pollen chemistry for families, genera and even congeneric species, revealing wide range of reproductive strategies, from storage of nutrients to variation in carotenoids and phenylpropanoids. The information on pollen’s chemical patterns for major plant taxa should be of outstanding value for various studies in plant biology and ecology, including aerobiology, palaeoecology, forensics, community ecology, plant-pollinator interactions, and climate effects on plants.

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          Perspectives on deciphering mechanisms underlying plant heat stress response and thermotolerance

          Global warming is a major threat for agriculture and food safety and in many cases the negative effects are already apparent. The current challenge of basic and applied plant science is to decipher the molecular mechanisms of heat stress response (HSR) and thermotolerance in detail and use this information to identify genotypes that will withstand unfavorable environmental conditions. Nowadays X-omics approaches complement the findings of previous targeted studies and highlight the complexity of HSR mechanisms giving information for so far unrecognized genes, proteins and metabolites as potential key players of thermotolerance. Even more, roles of epigenetic mechanisms and the involvement of small RNAs in thermotolerance are currently emerging and thus open new directions of yet unexplored areas of plant HSR. In parallel it is emerging that although the whole plant is vulnerable to heat, specific organs are particularly sensitive to elevated temperatures. This has redirected research from the vegetative to generative tissues. The sexual reproduction phase is considered as the most sensitive to heat and specifically pollen exhibits the highest sensitivity and frequently an elevation of the temperature just a few degrees above the optimum during pollen development can have detrimental effects for crop production. Compared to our knowledge on HSR of vegetative tissues, the information on pollen is still scarce. Nowadays, several techniques for high-throughput X-omics approaches provide major tools to explore the principles of pollen HSR and thermotolerance mechanisms in specific genotypes. The collection of such information will provide an excellent support for improvement of breeding programs to facilitate the development of tolerant cultivars. The review aims at describing the current knowledge of thermotolerance mechanisms and the technical advances which will foster new insights into this process.
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            Pollen wall development in flowering plants.

            The outer pollen wall, or exine, is more structurally complex than any other plant cell wall, comprising several distinct layers, each with its own organizational pattern. Since elucidation of the basic events of pollen wall ontogeny using electron microscopy in the 1970s, knowledge of their developmental genetics has increased enormously. However, self-assembly processes that are not under direct genetic control also play an important role in pollen wall patterning. This review integrates ultrastructural and developmental findings with recent models for self-assembly in an attempt to understand the origins of the morphological complexity and diversity that underpin the science of palynology.
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              Ferulic acid: a key component in grass lignocellulose recalcitrance to hydrolysis.

              In the near future, grasses must provide most of the biomass for the production of renewable fuels. However, grass cell walls are characterized by a large quantity of hydroxycinnamic acids such as ferulic and p-coumaric acids, which are thought to reduce the biomass saccharification. Ferulic acid (FA) binds to lignin, polysaccharides and structural proteins of grass cell walls cross-linking these components. A controlled reduction of FA level or of FA cross-linkages in plants of industrial interest can improve the production of cellulosic ethanol. Here, we review the biosynthesis and roles of FA in cell wall architecture and in grass biomass recalcitrance to enzyme hydrolysis.

                Author and article information

                Front Plant Sci
                Front Plant Sci
                Front. Plant Sci.
                Frontiers in Plant Science
                Frontiers Media S.A.
                31 March 2020
                : 11
                : 352
                [1] 1Division of Analytical Chemistry, Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, University of Zagreb , Zagreb, Croatia
                [2] 2Faculty of Science and Technology, Norwegian University of Life Sciences , Ås, Norway
                [3] 3Division of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry, Ruđer Bošković Institute , Zagreb, Croatia
                Author notes

                Edited by: Andras Gorzsas, Umeå University, Sweden

                Reviewed by: Scott D. Russell, The University of Oklahoma, United States; Barry Harvey Lomax, University of Nottingham, United Kingdom; Notburga Gierlinger, University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Austria

                *Correspondence: Boris Zimmermann, boris.zimmermann@ 123456nmbu.no

                This article was submitted to Technical Advances in Plant Science, a section of the journal Frontiers in Plant Science

                Copyright © 2020 Kenđel and Zimmermann.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

                : 08 October 2019
                : 10 March 2020
                Page count
                Figures: 10, Tables: 2, Equations: 0, References: 81, Pages: 19, Words: 0
                Plant Science
                Original Research

                Plant science & Botany
                raman spectroscopy,fourier transform infrared spectroscopy,multivariate analysis,male gametophyte,flowering,pollen wall,pollination,palynology


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