In the present study cytokinin dehydrogenase (CKX) activity was for the first time found in a conifer species, Pinus sylvestris. The activities were correlated with the endogenous cytokinin contents. Several enzyme substrates and two different electron acceptors were used to search for the enzyme activity in the extract from seeds, seedlings and plantlets. The highest specific activity was found in one-year-old plantlets with isopentenyladenine as the substrate and 2,6-dichlorophenolindophenol as the electron acceptor, at pH 8. An enhancement in the CKX specific activity corresponded to increasing contents of cytokinins, mainly isopentenyladenine and isopentenyladenosine, indicating that the enzyme activity is affected by the endogenous supply of cytokinins. CKX affinity for the ribosylated form of isopentenyladenine was dependent on the developmental stage, being higher in seeds than in seedlings, and not detectable in plantlets. The results are indicative of the presence of different isoenzymes throughout the development.