Dwarfism and cytochrome P450-mediated C-6 oxidation of plant steroid hormones

Biochem Soc Trans. 2006 Dec;34(Pt 6):1199-201. doi: 10.1042/BST0341199.


BRs (brassinosteroids) are plant steroid hormones that are essential for normal plant development. The dramatic dwarfism exhibited by mutants in the CYP (cytochrome P450) enzymes involved in BR biosynthesis indicates a role for these hormones in plant growth and development. Since the mid-1990s, collaborative research has been geared towards developing a better understanding of the CYP85 class of CYPs involved in BR biosynthesis in both Arabidopsis and tomato. Some of the most recent observations include the fact that certain CYP85 CYPs catalyse the synthesis of the most bioactive BR, BL (brassinolide). Current evidence suggests that evolution of this function may have occurred independently in different dicotyledonous species. Interestingly, BL accumulates in tomato fruits, highlighting a key role for this hormone in fruit development. At the same time as developing a better understanding of the enzymatic function of these CYPs, we have also carried out experiments towards characterizing where and when these genes are expressed and mechanisms of their regulation. As expected for a hormone involved in growth and development, biosynthetic gene promoter activity is associated with young rapidly growing cells and with fruit development.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Arabidopsis / enzymology*
  • Arabidopsis / growth & development
  • Arabidopsis Proteins / classification
  • Arabidopsis Proteins / genetics
  • Arabidopsis Proteins / metabolism*
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System / classification
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System / genetics
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System / metabolism*
  • Evolution, Molecular
  • Lycopersicon esculentum / enzymology*
  • Lycopersicon esculentum / growth & development*
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Phylogeny
  • Plant Diseases / genetics*
  • Plant Growth Regulators / metabolism*


  • Arabidopsis Proteins
  • Plant Growth Regulators
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System
  • brassinosteroid-6 oxidase 1, Arabidopsis