The idea of using hormone biostirnulants to improve the growth and development of plants first arose with the discovery in the 1930’s of auxins. Auxins, which generally resemble indoleacetic acid (IAA), are naturally-occurring substances synthesized from tryptophan and found in many plant parts including leaf primordial (first leaf on shoots), young leaves and developing seeds. It is transported cell to cell within the plant and, it is believed, via the phloem to the roots. !AA-binding proteins have been found in the plasma membrane, the cytoplasm and the nucleus. Auxins have the following effects: cell enlargement, cell division, vascular tissue differentiation, root initiation, fruit ripening, tropistic responses (such as growing toward or away from light), apical dominance, leaf senescence, fruit set and growth, flowering, and overall growth.
Gibberellins were recognized as biostimulants in the early 1950’s. There are at least 72 known gibberellins, but only a subset of these gibberellins are known to have biological activity. Gibberellins, synthesized from mevalonic acid, are found throughout the plant with the highest concentrations in young shoots and developing seeds. They are transported within the plant via both xylem and phloem. A gibberellin-binding site has been identified on the plasma membrane . Gibberellins have the following effects: stem growth, enzyme production, fruit set and growth, bolting, and seed germination.
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