Analysis of Flagellar Movement in Ginkgo biloba Sperm by High Speed Video Microscopy

  • Robert W. Ridge
  • Terumitsu Hori
  • Shin-ichi Miyamura


The discovery of a freely swimming sperm in Ginkgo biloba at the end of the nineteenth century by Sakugoro Hirase [1–3] was one of the most significant moments in botany, because it led to the establishment of Ginkgo as the true and sole link between the non-flowering primitive plants and the advanced seed plants. Hirase, as both amateur botanist and artist, was able to beautifully depict the sperm [2] and fertilization process in Ginkgo [3], and although he was able to describe the ornamentation of the spiral, from which emanate thousands of flagella, the instruments of the day prevented him from more fully understanding the complexity of the apparatus.


Pollen Tube Power Stroke Flagellar Movement Spiral Formation Body Oscillation 
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    Ridge RW, Hori T, Miyamura S (1989) High speed video analysis of living Ginkgo sperm. In: Proc 2nd Ann Meet Jpnese Soc Plant Morph, Tohoku Univ, SendaiGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Tokyo 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert W. Ridge
    • 1
  • Terumitsu Hori
    • 2
  • Shin-ichi Miyamura
    • 2
  1. 1.Biology Department, Division of Natural SciencesInternational Christian UniversityMitaka, Tokyo 181Japan
  2. 2.Institute of Biological SciencesUniversity of TsukubaTsukuba, Ibaraki 305Japan

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