Heat Shock Factor 1 (HSF1) is a master regulator of heat shock responsive signaling. In addition to playing critical roles in cellular heat shock response, emerging evidence suggests that HSF1 also regulates a non-heat shock responsive transcriptional network to handle metabolic, chemical, and genetic stress. The function of HSF1 in cellular transformation and cancer development has been extensively studied in recent years. Due to important roles for HSF1 for coping with various stressful cellular states, research on HSF1 has been very active. New functions and molecular mechanisms underlying these functions have been continuously discovered, providing new targets for novel cancer treatment strategies. In this article, we review the essential roles and mechanisms of HSF1 action in cancer cells, focusing more on recently discovered functions and their underlying mechanisms to reflect the new advances in cancer biology. In addition, we emphasize new advances with regard to HSF1 inhibitors for cancer drug development.
- Heat shock response
- cellular stress