Fluorescence from abnormally sterile pollen of the japanese apricot

Shinnosuke Mori, Shuichi Shimma, Hiromi Masuko-Suzuki, Masao Watanabe, Tetsu Nakanishi, Junko Tsukioka, Katsumi Goto, Hiroshi Fukui, Nobuhiro Hirai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


We observed trees of the Japanese apricot, Prunus mume ‘Nanko’ (Rosaceae), bearing two types of flowers: 34% had blue fluorescent pollen under UV irradiation, and 66% had non-fluorescent pollen. The fluorescent pollen grains were abnormally crushed, sterile, and devoid of intine and pollenkitt. The development of microspores within anthers was investigated: in the abnormally developed anthers, tapetal cells were vacuolated at the unicellular microspore stage, and fluorescent pollen was produced. Compounds responsible for the blue fluorescence of pollen were identified as chlorogenic acid and 1-O-feruloyl-β-D-glucose. The anthers with fluorescent pollen contained 6.7-fold higher and 3.8-fold lower amounts of chlorogenic acid and N1,N5,N10-tri-p-coumaroylspermidine, respectively, compared to those with non-fluorescent pollen. The tapetal vacuolization, highly accumulated chlorogenic acid, and deficiency of N1,N5,N10-tri-p-coumaroylspermidine imply that low-temperature stress during the early unicellular microspore stage caused a failure in microsporogenesis. Furthermore, potential effects of the visual difference on the bee behavior were also discussed through the colorimetry. The sterility, likely induced by low-temperature stress, and the preference of honeybees for fluorescence may reduce the pollination efficiency of P. mume.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)355-366
Number of pages12
JournalPlant Biotechnology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Fluorescence
  • Pollen
  • Pollination
  • Prunus mume
  • Sterility

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Plant Science


Dive into the research topics of 'Fluorescence from abnormally sterile pollen of the japanese apricot'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this