Flowering plant zygotes possess complete developmental potency, and the mixture of male and female genetic and cytosolic materials in the zygote is a trigger to initiate embryo development. Plasmogamy, the fusion of the gamete cytoplasms, facilitates the cellular dynamics of the zygote. In the last decade, mutant analyses, live cell imaging-based observations, and direct observations of fertilized egg cells by in vitro fusion of isolated gametes have accelerated our understanding of the post-plasmogamic events in flowering plants including cell wall formation, gamete nuclear migration and fusion, and zygotic cell elongation and asymmetric division. Especially, it has become more evident that paternal parent-of-origin effects, via sperm cytoplasm contents, not only control canonical early zygotic development, but also activate a biparental signaling pathway critical for cell fate determination after the first cell division. Here, we summarize the plasmogamic paternal contributions via the entry of sperm contents during/after fertilization in flowering plants.

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Published in Frontiers in Plant Science, v. 11, article 871.

© 2020 Ohnishi and Kawashima

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

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YO was supported by a research fellowship from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (No. 18J02251). TK was supported by the National Science Foundation (IOS-1928836) and the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, United States Department of Agriculture (Hatch Program-1014280).

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The Supplementary Material for this article can be found online at: https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpls.2020.00871/full#supplementary-material

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