The identification of cutin synthase: formation of the plant polyester cutin

Nat Chem Biol. 2012 Jul;8(7):609-11. doi: 10.1038/nchembio.960. Epub 2012 May 20.


A hydrophobic cuticle consisting of waxes and the polyester cutin covers the aerial epidermis of all land plants, providing essential protection from desiccation and other stresses. We have determined the enzymatic basis of cutin polymerization through characterization of a tomato extracellular acyltransferase, CD1, and its substrate, 2-mono(10,16-dihydroxyhexadecanoyl)glycerol. CD1 has in vitro polyester synthesis activity and is required for cutin accumulation in vivo, indicating that it is a cutin synthase.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry
  • Ligases / chemistry*
  • Ligases / metabolism
  • Membrane Lipids / biosynthesis*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Plants / enzymology
  • Plants / metabolism*


  • Membrane Lipids
  • cutin
  • Ligases

Associated data

  • GENBANK/JF968592
  • PubChem-Substance/135659537