Indolamines are tryptophan-derived specialized metabolites belonging to the huge and ubiquitous indole alkaloids group. Serotonin and melatonin are the best-characterized members of this family, given their many hormonal and physiological roles in animals. Following their discovery in plants, the study of plant indolamines has flourished and their involvement in important processes, including stress responses, growth and development, and reproduction, has been proposed, leading to their classification as a new category of phytohormones. However, the complex indolamine puzzle is far from resolved, particularly the biological roles of tryptamine, the early serotonin precursor representing the central hub of many downstream indole alkaloids. Tryptophan decarboxylase, which catalyzes the synthesis of tryptamine, strictly regulates the flux of carbon and nitrogen from the tryptophan pool into the indolamine pathway. Furthermore, tryptamine accumulates to high levels in the reproductive organs of many plant species and therefore cannot be classed as a mere intermediate but rather as an end product with potentially important func- tions in fruits and seeds. This review summarizes current knowledge on the role of tryptamine and its close relative serotonin, emphasizing the need for a clear understanding of the functions of, and mutual relations between, these indolamines and their biosynthesis pathways in plants.

The case of tryptamine and serotonin in plants: a mysterious precursor for an illustrious metabolite

Stefano Negri;Mauro Commisso;Linda Avesani;Flavia Guzzo
2021

Abstract

Indolamines are tryptophan-derived specialized metabolites belonging to the huge and ubiquitous indole alkaloids group. Serotonin and melatonin are the best-characterized members of this family, given their many hormonal and physiological roles in animals. Following their discovery in plants, the study of plant indolamines has flourished and their involvement in important processes, including stress responses, growth and development, and reproduction, has been proposed, leading to their classification as a new category of phytohormones. However, the complex indolamine puzzle is far from resolved, particularly the biological roles of tryptamine, the early serotonin precursor representing the central hub of many downstream indole alkaloids. Tryptophan decarboxylase, which catalyzes the synthesis of tryptamine, strictly regulates the flux of carbon and nitrogen from the tryptophan pool into the indolamine pathway. Furthermore, tryptamine accumulates to high levels in the reproductive organs of many plant species and therefore cannot be classed as a mere intermediate but rather as an end product with potentially important func- tions in fruits and seeds. This review summarizes current knowledge on the role of tryptamine and its close relative serotonin, emphasizing the need for a clear understanding of the functions of, and mutual relations between, these indolamines and their biosynthesis pathways in plants.
Fruit indolamines
melatonin
plant indolamines
SNAT
specialized metabolites
T5H
TDC
tryptamine
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11562/1045641
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