Role of the reprogramming factor KLF4 in blood formation

J Leukoc Biol. 2016 May;99(5):673-85. doi: 10.1189/jlb.1RU1215-539R. Epub 2016 Feb 23.


Krüppel-like factor 4 is a zinc finger protein with dual functions that can act as a transcriptional activator and repressor of genes involved in cell proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis. Although most studies have focused on terminally differentiated epithelial cells, evidence suggests that Krüppel-like factor 4 regulates the development and function of the myeloid and lymphoid blood lineages. The ability of Krüppel-like factor 4 to dedifferentiate from somatic cells into pluripotent stem cells in cooperation with other reprogramming factors suggests its potential function in the preservation of tissue-specific stem cells. Additionally, emerging interest in the redifferentiation of induced pluripotent stem cells into blood cells to correct hematologic deficiencies and malignancies warrants further studies on the role of Krüppel-like factor 4 in steady-state blood formation.

Keywords: gene regulation; hematopoiesis; lymphocytes; myeloid cells; transcription factor.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cellular Reprogramming* / genetics
  • Chromatin / metabolism
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Hematopoiesis* / genetics
  • Humans
  • Kruppel-Like Transcription Factors / genetics
  • Kruppel-Like Transcription Factors / metabolism*
  • Models, Biological


  • Chromatin
  • GKLF protein
  • Kruppel-Like Transcription Factors