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Curr Opin Plant Biol. 2001 Jun;4(3):234-40.

Metabolism of tyrosine and tryptophan--new genes for old pathways.

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  • 1Boston University, Department of Biology, 5 Cummington Street, 02215, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.


Tyrosine and tryptophan are precursors for the plant defense compounds dhurrin and indole glucosinolates, respectively. In addition, tryptophan is a precursor for the essential phytohormone indole-3-acetic acid. Recent advances in understanding the biosynthesis of these compounds have come from the characterization of enzymes that catalyze the N-hydroxylation of the precursor amino acid to the oxime intermediate. Furthermore, enzymes catalyzing subsequent biosynthetic steps have also been identified.

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