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Ultrastructural Changes in Pollen Exposed to Ozone. B. H. Harrison, Assistant Professor of Biology, University of Massachusetts, Boston 02116; W. A. Feder, Professor of Plant Pathology, University of Massachusetts, Waltham 02154. Phytopathology 64:257-258. DOI: 10.1094/Phyto-64-257.

Pollen of ozone-sensitive and ozone-tolerant cultivars of petunia exposed to ozone showed lowered germination rates. Pollen of both cultivars were prepared for electron microscopy using three standard methods. Controls had uniformly electron-opaque cell walls and normal organelles. Over 50% of the ozonated pollen of the ozone-sensitive cultivar had a peripheral band of cytoplasm which was free of all organelles except ribosomes. Fewer grains of the ozone-tolerant pollen showed the cytoplasmic change. It is suggested that the organelles migrate away from the plasma membrane in response to ozone and that this, in turn, affects germination and cell wall development of the pollen tube.

Additional keywords: air pollution.