FOXM1: A key oncofoetal transcription factor in health and disease

Semin Cancer Biol. 2014 Dec;29:32-9. doi: 10.1016/j.semcancer.2014.07.008. Epub 2014 Jul 25.


Forkhead Box M1 (FOXM1) is a bona fide oncofoetal transcription factor, which orchestrates complex temporal and spatial gene expression throughout embryonic and foetal development as well as during adult tissue homeostasis and repair. Controlled FOXM1 expression and activity provides a balanced transcriptional programme to ensure proper growth and maturation during embryogenesis and foetal development as well as to manage appropriate homeostasis and repair of adult tissues. Conversely, deregulated FOXM1 upregulation likely affects cell migration, invasion, angiogenesis, stem cell renewal, DNA damage repair and cellular senescence, which impact tumour initiation, progression, metastasis, angiogenesis and drug resistance. A thorough understanding of the regulation and role of FOXM1 in health and in cancer should contribute to the development of better diagnostics and treatments for cancer as well as congenital disorders and other developmental diseases.

Keywords: Cancer; Development; FOXM1; Oncofoetal protein; Transcription factor.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antigens, Neoplasm / biosynthesis
  • Antigens, Neoplasm / genetics*
  • Cell Movement / genetics
  • Cell Proliferation / genetics
  • Cell Transformation, Neoplastic / genetics
  • Cellular Senescence / genetics
  • DNA Repair / genetics
  • Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition / genetics
  • Forkhead Box Protein M1
  • Forkhead Transcription Factors / biosynthesis
  • Forkhead Transcription Factors / genetics*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Neoplastic Stem Cells
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / genetics
  • Transcriptional Activation


  • Antigens, Neoplasm
  • FOXM1 protein, human
  • Forkhead Box Protein M1
  • Forkhead Transcription Factors
  • oncofetal antigens