Postprint version. Published in Trends in Plant Sciences, Volume 5, Issue 7, July 1, 2000, pages 278-282.
NOTE: At the time of publication, the author Edward Himelblau was not yet affiliated with Cal Poly.
The definitive version is available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S1360-1385(00)01655-1.
Senescence is the last stage of leaf development and one type of programmed cell death that occurs in plants. The relationships among senescence programs that are induced by a variety of factors have been addressed at a molecular level in recent studies. Furthermore, an overlap between the pathogen-response and senescence programs is beginning to be characterized. The complexity of the senescence program is also evident in studies of senescence-specific gene regulation and the role of photosynthesis and plant hormones in senescence regulation. New molecular-genetic approaches are expected to be useful in unraveling the molecular mechanisms of the leaf senescence program.