Plants come of age

There comes a time in every plant's life when it starts thinking about the birds and the bees. That time arrives when the sap is rising, or more realistically when the phytochemical gibberellin kicks into action. Now, crystallography has revealed the structure of the gibberellin protein receptor, which could help in designing more effective and potentially cheaper growth regulators for agriculture, according to Peter Hedden, a plant biochemist at Rothamsted Research, UK. Toshio Hakoshima, of the Nara Institute of Science & Technology, in Japan and Tai-ping Sun, and colleagues at Duke University were responsible for determining the structure.