Pollen tube targeting and axon guidance: Parallels in tip growth mechanisms

Ravishankar Palanivelu, Daphne Preuss

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

121 Scopus citations


The growth of pollen tubes to plant egg cells and the guidance of axons to neural synapses are classic examples of targeted cell growth. Despite the evolutionary time that separates animals and plants, axon and pollen tube guidance share remarkable mechanistic similarities. In both instances, extracellular cues are transduced by intracellular signal-transduction pathways that culminate in directed tip growth. Do the mechanistic similarities extend to the molecular level? Here, we address this question by a comprehensive review of the molecules and pathways involved in pollen tube targeting and axon guidance. The emerging scenario is that similar intracellular molecules are recruited to control tip growth, while different extracellular molecules mediate guidance through the distinct plant and animal extracellular matrices. Copyright (C) 2000 Elsevier Science Ltd.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)517-524
Number of pages8
JournalTrends in Cell Biology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology


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