Oxylipins are acyclic or cyclic oxidation products derived from the catabolism of fatty acids which regulate many defense and developmental pathways in plants. The dramatic increase in the volume of publications and reviews on these compounds since 1997 documents the increasing interest in this compound and its role in plants. Research on this topic has solidified our understanding of the chemistry and biosynthetic pathways for oxylipin production. However, more information is still needed on how free fatty acids are produced and the role of beta-oxidation in the biosynthetic pathway for oxylipins. It is also becoming apparent that oxylipin content and composition changes during growth and development and during pathogen or insect attack. Oxylipins such as jasmonic acid (JA) or 12-oxo-phytodienoic acid modulate the expression of numerous genes and influence specific aspects of plant growth, development and responses to abiotic and biotic stresses. Although oxylipins are believed to act alone, several examples were presented to illustrate that JA-induced responses are modulated by the type and the nature of crosstalk with other signaling molecules such as ethylene and salicylic acid. How oxylipins cause changes in gene expression and instigate a physiological response is becoming understood with the isolation of mutations in both positive and negative regulators in the jasmonate signaling pathway and the use of cDNA microarrays.