Transcriptional regulation of early oogenesis: in search of masters

Hum Reprod Update. 2006 Jan-Feb;12(1):65-76. doi: 10.1093/humupd/dmi033. Epub 2005 Sep 2.


Transcription factors in the germline play important roles in ovary formation and folliculogenesis, and control both oocyte development and somatic cell function. Factor in the germline (Figla) and newborn ovary homeobox gene (Nobox) represent a growing number of oocyte-specific transcription factors that regulate genes unique to oocytes. Studies on oocyte-specific transcription factors are important in understanding the genetic pathways essential for oogenesis, pluripotency, and embryonic development. Likely, these genes regulate reproductive life span and represent candidate genes for reproductive disorders, such as premature ovarian failure, and infertility. Therefore, oocyte-specific transcription factors, and oocyte-specific genes regulated by such factors, are attractive tissue-specific pharmacological targets to regulate human fertility.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Basic Helix-Loop-Helix Transcription Factors / genetics
  • Basic Helix-Loop-Helix Transcription Factors / metabolism
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental*
  • Homeodomain Proteins / genetics
  • Homeodomain Proteins / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Oocytes / physiology
  • Oogenesis / genetics*
  • Ovarian Follicle / cytology
  • Ovarian Follicle / embryology
  • Ovarian Follicle / growth & development*
  • Transcription Factors / genetics
  • Transcription Factors / metabolism
  • Transcription, Genetic*


  • Basic Helix-Loop-Helix Transcription Factors
  • Figla protein, mouse
  • Homeodomain Proteins
  • NOBOX protein, human
  • Transcription Factors