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Small molecules offer exciting opportunities for plant science. So far, bioactive small molecules have been identified as plant hormones, herbicides, growth regulators, or taken from animal research. Recently, plant scientists have started to explore further the chemical space for novel modulators of plant hormone signalling, and have followed up this work with exciting discoveries illustrating the potential of small molecules such as brassinazole and sirtinol. New chemical genetic screens have been designed to generate chemical tools for the investigation of membrane trafficking, gravitropism and plant immunity. Further novel 'chemetic' tools to identify targets and modes of action are currently generated through an intimate interdisciplinary collaboration between biologists and small molecule chemists.

Original publication




Journal article


Curr Opin Chem Biol

Publication Date





88 - 98


Benzamides, Genetic Techniques, Gravitropism, Herbicides, Naphthols, Plant Development, Plant Diseases, Plant Growth Regulators, Plant Physiological Phenomena, Plants, Signal Transduction, Triazoles