what are synergids and antipodal cells how are connected to each other?

  • In mature female gamete(embryo sac) of the flowering plants, a group of 3 cells are located towards the chalaizal end. These cells are known as antipodal cells. Till now the specific function of antipodal cells is unknown.
  • Synergids are one of two small cells lying near the egg in the mature embryo sac of a flowering plant.


  • In most flowering plants, only one megaspore is functional while the other three degenerate. The single functional megaspore develops into the female gametophyte or embryo sac. This kind of development is called monosporic development. The nucleus of the functional megaspore divides mitotically to form 2 nuclei, which move towards the opposite ends, forming a 2-nucleate embryo sac. Two more mitotic divisions ensue, leading to the formation of 4-nucleate and 8-nucleate embryo sacs. After the 8-nucleate stage, the cell walls are laid down and the typical female gametophyte (embryo sac) gets organised. Six of the 8-nuclei get surrounded by the cell wall and the remaining two, called polar nuclei, are situated below the egg apparatus in the large central cell. Three of the six cells are placed at the micropylar end and constitute the egg apparatus (2 synergids + 1 egg cell). The synergids have special thickenings at the micropylar end. These are together called the filiform apparatus. It helps in leading the pollen tubes into the synergids. Three cells are at the chalazal end, and are called antipodal cells. A typical angiosperm female gametophyte is 7-celled and 8-nucleated at maturity.



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One of two small, short-lived nuclei lying near the egg in the mature embryo sac of a flowering plant. The synergids are part of the egg apparatus  and are thought to help the pollen nucleus reach the egg cell for fertilization

The haploid cells, usually three in number, found in the embryo sac at the opposite end to the micropyle. They are derived by mitotic divisions of the *megaspore and have no distinct cell wall. They take no part in the fertilization process and their function is unknown. At fertilization they may disintegrate or multiply and enlarge.

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1st piont is of synergids

2nd point is of antipodal cells

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