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Trends Plant Sci. 2001 May;6(5):212-9.

ORCAnization of jasmonate-responsive gene expression in alkaloid metabolism.

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Institute of Molecular Plant Sciences, Clusius Laboratory, Wassenaarseweg 64, 2333 AL Leiden, The Netherlands.


Jasmonic acid is an important plant stress signalling molecule. It induces the biosynthesis of defence proteins and protective secondary metabolites. In alkaloid metabolism, jasmonate acts by coordinate activation of the expression of multiple biosynthesis genes. In terpenoid indole alkaloid metabolism and primary precursor pathways, jasmonate induces gene expression and metabolism via ORCAs, which are members of the AP2/ERF-domain family of plant transcription factors. Other jasmonate-regulated (secondary) metabolic pathways might also be controlled by ORCA-like AP2/ERF-domain transcription factors. If so, such regulators could be used to improve plant fitness or metabolite productivity of plants or cell cultures.

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