Low-temperature stress during microspore development alters cellular organization in rice anthers. The major cellular damage includes unusual starch accumulation in the plastids of the endothecium in postmeiotic anthers, abnormal vacuolation and hypertrophy of the tapetum, premature callose (1,3-β-glucan) breakdown and lack of normal pollen wall formation. These cellular lesions arise from damage to critical biochemical processes that include sugar metabolism in the anthers and its use by the microspores. Failure of utilization of the callose breakdown product and other microspore wall components like sporopollenin can also be considered as critical. In recent years, considerable progress has been made in the understanding of major biochemical processes including the expression of critical genes that are sensitive to low temperature in rice and cause male sterility. This paper combines a discussion of cellular organization and associated biochemical processes that are sensitive to low temperatures and provides an overview of the potential mechanisms of low-temperature-induced male sterility in rice.