Plant Growth Hormones and Other Phytochemicals

  • Luciana Porto de Souza VandenbergheEmail author
  • Cristine Rodrigues
  • Juliana de Oliveira
  • Carlos Ricardo Soccol


Plant hormones are signaling molecules that are present in small quantities. They act differently depending upon the concentration and environmental conditions. The main plant hormones are auxins such as indole-3-acetic acid (IAA), the gibberellins (GAs), abscisic acid (ABA), cytokinins, and ethylene. The effect of IAA varies with the concentration and the part of the plant where it is applied. Its exact mechanism of action is not completely known, but it is believed that it is involved in the activation of enzymes, which increases the plasticity of the cell walls, thereby increasing the cell volume and, consequently, the growth of the plant. The GAs are a large family of diterpenes, an important group of plant hormones, which exert several effects on the growth and development of plants, such as germination, growth of leaves, and flower development. Auxins stimulate the transfer activity of the vascular system, causing increased formation of xylem and phloem in woody plants. ABA is associated with the seed maturation and desiccation tolerance of viviparity. Cytokinins, such as zeatin, promote cell division and differentiation of organs, having widely used in the culture and handling plant tissue in vitro. It is also important to cite the ethylene, a gaseous hormone that stimulates fruit ripening, abscission, senescence, and, for some species, flowering. Considering the great importance of agriculture to the global economy, the demand for alternatives to the increase production of various agricultural products is justified. Plant hormones (phytohormones) appear then to increase the technical and economic efficiency of various agricultural production systems. Thus, this chapter focuses on plant hormones and phytochemicals, their structure, mode of action, and its great economic importance for agriculture as well as alternatives that enable their production and use on a large scale.


Gibberellic Acid Plant Hormone Fusarium Moniliforme Isopentenyl Diphosphate Cladosporium Cladosporioides 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Luciana Porto de Souza Vandenberghe
    • 1
    Email author
  • Cristine Rodrigues
    • 1
  • Juliana de Oliveira
    • 1
  • Carlos Ricardo Soccol
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biotechnology and Bioprocess EngineeringFederal University of Paraná—UFPRCuritibaBrazil

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