Laboratory of Bioactive Molecules

Plant hormones are a group of bioactive molecules that regulate growth and development at extremely low concentrations. We’ve been studying how plant hormones are made and act in plants by characterizing mutants with altered hormone levels or responsiveness. Because of their sessile nature, plants carefully monitor the environment and alter their growth and development. Many plant hormones are involved in such adaptive responses. Strigolactones have been known as chemical signals that are released from roots and play a role in symbiosis and parasitism. We have recently identified strigolactones as a new hormone that regulates shoot branching under changing nutrient conditions. We’ve been studying their biosynthesis, perception mechanism and biological functions in detail. We also look for new hormone-like substances that regulate plant growth and development using relevant mutants. We use mutants to study hormone biosynthesis and action mechanism