Altered expression of Maize PLASTOCHRON1 (CYP78A) increases auxin levels, extends cell division duration and increases biomass and seed yield

Previously, the rice PLA1 gene encoding a CYTOCHROME P450 (CYP78A) was shown to increase vegetative growth. Sun et al. enhanced expressed maize PLA1 specifically in the leaf growth zone under the control of the GA2ox promoter. Transgenic plants produced larger leaves and larger seed yields than control plants. Kinematic analysis revealed that the transgene increased the duration of cell division in the leaves. These effects are correlated with enhanced levels of auxin and auxin metabolites in the cell division zone. The substrates of CYP78A are not known, but there is no indication that it directly affects auxin levels. Nature Comms. 10.1038/ncomms14752