The biology of the mammalian Krüppel-like family of transcription factors

Duyen T. Dang, Jonathan Pevsner, Vincent W. Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

347 Scopus citations


Recent advances in molecular cloning have led to the identification of a large number of mammalian zinc finger-containing transcription factors that exhibit homology to the Drosophila melanogaster protein, Krüppel. Although the amino acid sequences in the zinc finger domains of these Krüppel-like factors (KLFs) are closely related to one another, the regions outside the zinc fingers of the proteins are usually unique. KLFs display seemingly different and broad biological properties with each functioning as an activator of transcription, a repressor or both. This review article provides a current phylogenetic classification of the identified KLFs to date. More importantly, the currently known biological activities of the KLFs in regulating transcription, cell proliferation, differentiation and development are summarized and compared. Further characterization of this interesting protein family should provide additional insights into the their respective regulatory role in various important biological processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1103-1121
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal of Biochemistry and Cell Biology
Issue number11-12
StatePublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • Activation
  • Gene expression
  • Krüppel-like factors
  • Repression
  • Transcription factors
  • Zinc fingers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


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