Krüppel-like factors (KLFs) are a family of zinc-finger transcription factors that are found in many species. Recent studies have shown that KLFs play a fundamental role in regulating diverse biological processes such as cell proliferation, differentiation, development and regeneration. Of note, several KLFs are also crucial for maintaining pluripotency and, hence, have been linked to reprogramming and regenerative medicine approaches. Here, we review the crucial functions of KLFs in mammalian embryogenesis, stem cell biology and regeneration, as revealed by studies of animal models. We also highlight how KLFs have been implicated in human diseases and outline potential avenues for future research.
The authors declare no competing or financial interests.
This work was supported by funds from the National Institutes of Health (V.W.Y. and S.K.M.), the American Heart Association (S.K.M.), and Dialysis Clinic, Inc. (S.K.M.). Deposited in PMC for release after 12 months.