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Carotenoids are structurally diverse pigments and related derivatives that mediate photosynthetic function, responses to biotic and abiotic signals, and control plant architecture. It is these multifaceted roles that make carotenoids uniquely attractive as synthetic biology targets when considering ways to alter plant form and function to meet the needs of food security or new agricultural and industrial applications. This Update seeks to explore how synthetic biology might capitalize on the recent advances made in the carotenoid field. Opportunities are discussed along with the research needed to drive the carotenoid synthetic biology era forward.

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