Sox family transcription factors are well-established regulators of cell fate decisions during development. Accumulating evidence documents that they play additional roles in adult tissue homeostasis and regeneration. Remarkably, forced expression of Sox factors, in combination with other synergistic factors, reprograms differentiated cells into somatic or pluripotent stem cells. Dysregulation of Sox factors has been further implicated in diseases including cancer. Here, we review molecular and functional evidence linking Sox proteins with stem cell biology, cellular reprogramming, and disease with an emphasis on Sox2.
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