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Oncogene. 2008 Apr 7;27(16):2258-62. doi: 10.1038/onc.2008.29.

A brief introduction to FOXOlogy.

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  • 1Laboratory of Physiological Chemistry, University Medical Center Utrecht, Stratenum, Utrecht, The Netherlands.


Members of the Forkhead box O (FOXO) class of transcription factors are key players in the regulation of cell-fate decisions, such as cell death, cell proliferation and cell metabolism. Furthermore, in model organisms, it has by now been demonstrated that FOXO function affects the life span of these organisms. Multiple signal transduction pathways regulate FOXO function, but most importantly, they are negatively regulated by protein kinase B (PKB/AKT)-mediated phosphorylation and constitute, therefore, an important downstream component of insulin signalling. This review issue provides a timely overview of our understanding of FOXO function and how signalling affects FOXO function. Taken together, the reviewed studies on FOXO function and regulation provide compelling evidence that FOXOs act at the crossroad between aging and age-related diseases including diabetes and cancer. With this perspective, further studies on FOXO function and regulation may shed light on how age impacts on the onset and progression of disease.

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