Extracts of Brassica napus L. (rape) pollen (family, Cruciferae) have been reported to produce a novel growth-promoting effect when applied to young pinto bean plants1,2. Fractions that are active in the bean second-internode assay3 give rise to both increased cell elongation and cell division4. The validity of these early reports has been questioned because biological activity was not correlated with any one pure compound5. Subsequently, we showed that isolation of the growth promoter was complicated by the presence of chromatographically similar, inactive components that were identified as 6-D-glucopyranosyl esters of long-chain fatty acids6. We now report the isolation, structure determination and biological activity of this new plant growth promoter, named (22R, 23R, 24S)-2α-3α,22,23-tetrahydroxy-24-methyl-6,7-s-5α-cholestano-6,7-lactone or brassinolide (Fig. 1).