Primary fixation with buffered glutaraldehyde plus 2.0 mM CaCl2 and 0.1% tannic acid results in the preservation of certain portions of the plasma membrane coat of Chara when seen with the electron microscope. Such a coat is not observable after fixation with glutaraldehyde alone. The coat appears to be present on all the above ground, vegetative cells of the male plant. Within complex invaginations of the plasma membrane, which are known as charasomes, the coat has two structural components, a central core that is either tubular or solid and a fibrous or granular peripheral region that surrounds the core. The coat material appears to be at least partially derived, via exocytosis, from the contents of single membrane-bound organelles known as glycosomes. Glycosomes seem to originate from within an assemblage of membranes and coated vesicles that can be described, in purely structural terms, as a partially coated reticulum. Such a reticulum is distinguishable from Golgi stacks because the reticulum (a) is not composed of stacked membranes, (b) is extensively involved with large, clearly detailed coated vesicles and coated invaginations, (c) is closely associated with glycosomes, and (d) is only slightly stained by the zinc-iodide-osmium tetraoxide reagent.

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