ALL CELL IMAGES: Picture of Plasmodesmata between two plant cells

plasmodesmata diagram (graphic)

Plant Cell Picture: Plasmodesmata; this image is 500 pixels across the original is 4,000 pixels across.

Plasmodesmata are the connecting channels that link plant cells together. They consist of a break in the cell wall that is lined by cell membrane. Through this channel, passes a strand of membrane called the desmotubule. Desmotubules are derived from rough endoplasmic reticulum that has been stretched to form a rod like structure. Molecules pass along the channel that surrounds the desmotubule. The cytoplasm of all cells in a plant is connected via the plasmodesmata. Plant viruses spread via plasmodesmata (please see Ed Rybicki's page on virus entry into plant cells).

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