Starch granule morphology in oat endosperm

Benedetta Saccomanno, Alan Chambers, Alec Hayes, IM Mackay, Simon McWilliams, Kay Trafford*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Mature and developing oat (Avena sativa) grains were sectioned and image analysis methods used to estimate the starch granule-size distribution and morphology in endosperm cells. This showed that oat endosperm cells contain two types of starch granule: compound starch granules such as those seen in rice endosperm and in most other grasses; and simple granules similar to the B-type starch granules seen in the endosperm of Triticeae species such as wheat (Triticum aestivum). The simple granules in oats are similar in size and relative abundance to B-type granules in Triticeae suggesting that they may share a common evolutionary origin. However, there is a fundamental difference between oats and Triticeae in the timing of granule initiation during grain development. In Triticeae, the B-type granules initiate several days after the A-type granules whereas in oats, both the simple and compound granule types initiate at the same time, in early grain development.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)46-54
JournalJournal of Cereal Science
Early online date11 Nov 2016
Publication statusPrint publication - 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • oats
  • starch granules
  • Seeds


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