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Cytological approaches combined with chemical analysis reveals the layered nature of flax mucilage

Abstract : The external seed coat cell layer of certain species is specialized in the production and extrusion of a polysaccharide matrix called mucilage. Variations in the content of the released mucilage have been mainly associated with genetically regulated physiological modifications. Understanding the mucilage extrusion process in crop species is of importance to gain deeper insight into the complex cell wall biosynthesis and dynamics. In this study, we took advantage of the varying polysaccharide composition and the size of the flax mucilage secretory cells (MSCs) to study mucilage composition and extrusion in this species of agricultural interest. We demonstrate herein that flax MSCs are structured in four superimposed layers and that rhamnogalacturonans I (RG I) are firstly synthesized, in the upper face, preceding arabinoxylan and glucan synthesis in MSC lower layers. Our results also reveal that the flax mucilage release originates from inside MSC, between the upper and deeper layers, the latter collaborating to trigger polysaccharide expansion, radial cell wall breaking and mucilage extrusion in a peeling fashion. Here, we provide evidence that the layer organization and polysaccharide composition of the MSCs regulate the mucilage release efficiency like a peeling mechanism. Finally, we propose that flax MSCs may represent an excellent model for further investigations of mucilage biosynthesis and its release.
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Fabien Miart, Françoise Fournet, Nelly Dubrulle, Emmanuel Petit, Hervé Demailly, et al.. Cytological approaches combined with chemical analysis reveals the layered nature of flax mucilage. Frontiers in Plant Science, Frontiers, 2019, 10, ⟨10.3389/fpls.2019.00684⟩. ⟨hal-02619440⟩

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