Signatures of selection and evolutionary relevance of cytochrome P450s in plant-insect interactions

Bernarda Calla

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Enzymes in the cytochrome P450 (P450) superfamily have important functions ranging from those that are essential for the physiology and development of the individual to those that mediate interactions between individuals and their biotic environment. Until recently the study of P450s had focused on single functions, substrates, or pathways. Recent advances in sequencing, genome assembly, and phylogenetic methods have returned emphasis to the adaptive value of these enzymes in the context of herbivory. Comparisons of whole repertoires of P450s across related species reveal that P450s capable of metabolizing xenobiotics have an increased rate of gains compared to losses after gene duplications. In plants, studies have focused on enzymes and end-functions that have converged to provide increased resistance to herbivory. This review summarizes the latest findings related to the ecological value of P450s in the interactions between phytophagous insects and their host plants.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)92-96
Number of pages5
JournalCurrent Opinion in Insect Science
Early online dateDec 4 2020
StatePublished - Feb 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Insect Science
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics


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