Untargeted metabolomic analysis of tomato pollen development and heat stress response

Marine J. Paupière, Florian Müller, Hanjing Li, Ivo Rieu, Yury M. Tikunov, Richard G.F. Visser, Arnaud G. Bovy*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

72 Citations (Scopus)


Key message: Pollen development metabolomics.Abstract: Developing pollen is among the plant structures most sensitive to high temperatures, and a decrease in pollen viability is often associated with an alteration of metabolite content. Most of the metabolic studies of pollen have focused on a specific group of compounds, which limits the identification of physiologically important metabolites. To get a better insight into pollen development and the pollen heat stress response, we used a liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry platform to detect secondary metabolites in pollen of tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) at three developmental stages under control conditions and after a short heat stress at 38 °C. Under control conditions, the young microspores accumulated a large amount of alkaloids and polyamines, whereas the mature pollen strongly accumulated flavonoids. The heat stress treatment led to accumulation of flavonoids in the microspore. The biological role of the detected metabolites is discussed. This study provides the first untargeted metabolomic analysis of developing pollen under a changing environment that can serve as reference for further studies.
Original languageEnglish
Article number81
JournalPlant Reproduction
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • Heat stress
  • High temperature
  • Metabolomics
  • Pollen development
  • Untargeted analysis


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