Cytokinin primes plant responses to wounding and reduces Insect performance

Christopher Dervinis, Christopher J. Frost, Susan D. Lawrence, Nicole G. Novak, John M. Davis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


We report a potential role of endogenous cytokinin supply in priming plant defense against herbivory. Cytokinin priming significantly reduced weight gain by insect larvae. Unlike previously described priming by volatile compounds, priming by cytokinin did not overcome vascular restrictions on systemic wound signaling. However, similar to priming by volatile compounds, cytokinin priming occurred upstream of accumulation of jasmonic acid and its precursor linolenic acid in mechanically wounded source leaves. Cytokinin priming significantly altered wound-induced accumulation of transcripts encoding homologs of allene oxide synthase, trypsin inhibitor, and chitinase. Cytokinin priming may reflect coordination between aboveground inducible defense against herbivory and belowground processes such as nutrient availability. These findings should encourage investigations of how genetic alterations in cytokinin signaling and response pathways may affect plant-herbivore interactions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)289-296
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Plant Growth Regulation
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Cytokinin
  • Populus
  • Priming
  • Wounding

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Plant Science


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