Pollen tube

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Pollen tubes of a lily under the scanning electron microscope

The pollen tube is part of the male gametophyte in seed plants and enables the sperm of the pollen grain to be transported to fertilize the female ovules . It is formed by the vegetative cell (pollen tube cell ) and the intine of the pollen grain that has reached the scar during germination. In the more primitive gymnosperms ( ginkgo , cycadopsida ) it serves to fix and nourish the male gametophyte, in the other seed plants it serves to transfer the male sex cells into the ovule and thus to fertilization.

The structure and function of the pollen tubes were first examined by Rudolf Virchow .