Inhibiting Heat Shock Factor 1 in Cancer: A Unique Therapeutic Opportunity.


Journal Article (Review)

The ability of cancer cells to cope with stressful conditions is critical for their survival, proliferation, and metastasis. The heat shock transcription factor 1 (HSF1) protects cells from stresses such as chemicals, radiation, and temperature. These properties of HSF1 are exploited by a broad spectrum of cancers, which exhibit high levels of nuclear, active HSF1. Functions for HSF1 in malignancy extend well beyond its central role in protein quality control. While HSF1 has been validated as a powerful target in cancers by genetic knockdown studies, HSF1 inhibitors reported to date have lacked sufficient specificity and potency for clinical evaluation. We review the roles of HSF1 in cancer, its potential as a prognostic indicator for cancer treatment, evaluate current HSF1 inhibitors and provide guidelines for the identification of selective HSF1 inhibitors as chemical probes and for clinical development.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Dong, B; Jaeger, AM; Thiele, DJ

Published Date

  • December 2019

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 40 / 12

Start / End Page

  • 986 - 1005

PubMed ID

  • 31727393

Pubmed Central ID

  • 31727393

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1873-3735

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/


  • eng

Conference Location

  • England