Although poplar is widely used for genomic and biotechnological manipulations of wood, the cellular basis of wood development in poplar has not been accurately documented at an ultrastructural level. Developing secondary xylem cells from hybrid poplar (Populus deltoides x P. trichocarpa), which were actively making secondary cell walls, were preserved with high pressure freezing/freeze substitution for light and electron microscopy. The distribution of xylans and mannans in the different cell types of developing secondary xylem were detected with immunofluorescence and immuno-gold labeling. While xylans, detected with the monoclonal antibody LM10, had a general distribution across the secondary xylem, mannans were enriched in the S2 secondary cell wall layer of fibers. To observe the cellular structures associated with secondary wall production, cryofixed fibers were examined with transmission electron microscopy during differentiation. There were abundant cortical microtubules and endomembrane activity in cells during the intense phase of secondary cell wall synthesis. Microtubuleassociated small membrane compartments were commonly observed, as well as Golgi and secretory vesicles fusing with the plasma membrane.
Kaneda M, Rensing K, Samuels L (2010) Secondary cell wall deposition in developing secondary xylem of poplar. J. Integr. Plant Biol. 52(2), 234–243.