Hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase gene for alteration of plant phenotype [Express]



This invention relates to the field of plant biotechnology and specifically to methods of enhancing the performance of plants by the expression of a steroid dehydrogenase gene. The expression of this gene, believed to be involved in the mechanism of brassinosteroid formation and/or action, results in plants demonstrating increased vegetative growth and higher seed yield. Brassinosteroids are a class of plant growth regulatory substances found in low concentrations in all species of plants that have been examined.

Technology transfer

This technology is available for licensing. There is an opportunity for this invention to be developed for particular applications and for a demonstration of the final product through a collaborative research project. The business opportunity may be referred to by its NRC ID: 11771.

Market applications

Applications are particularly important in the agricultural sector for developing higher-yielding crops that maintain performance under sub-optimal conditions.

How it works

The invention describes a novel plant hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase gene (HSD), that affects a variety of physiological processes in higher plants. The novel gene product has a degree of similarity to mammalian genes, known to control the interconversion of steroids. In plants the over expression of the HSD gene results in transgenic plants with significantly greater biomass and vigor, increased seed yield, increased tolerance to salt and a suppression of ABA mediated seed dormancy. In general, a transgenic plant recovered that expresses the recombinant HSD gene will produce an enhanced growth phenotype that will include a larger biomass or plant height, increased branching or flowering, or a faster growth rate as measured by the growth of transgenic plants relative to non-transgenic plants of the same species.


  • May be applicable in all plant species.
  • Any method for the introduction of foreign DNA may be used.
  • Reduced dormancy
  • Increased productivity
  • Increased stress tolerance


NRC file 11771:

Contact us

To inquire about this technology, please contact:

François Couture
Business Advisor, ACRD
Telephone: 418-931-6725
Email: Francois.Couture@cnrc-nrc.gc.ca