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Reviewed October 2013
What is the official name of the FOXL2 gene?
The official name of this gene is “forkhead box L2.”
FOXL2 is the gene's official symbol. The FOXL2 gene is also known by other names, listed below.
Read more about gene names and symbols on the About page.
What is the normal function of the FOXL2 gene?
The FOXL2 gene provides instructions for making a protein that attaches (binds) to specific regions of DNA and helps control the activity of particular genes. On the basis of this role, the FOXL2 protein is called a transcription factor. The protein contains one area where a protein building block (amino acid) called alanine is repeated multiple times. This stretch of alanines is known as a polyalanine tract or poly(A) tract. The function of this poly(A) tract is unknown.
The FOXL2 protein is active in multiple tissues, including the eyelids, the ovaries, and a hormone-producing gland at the base of the brain called the pituitary. It is likely involved in the development of muscles in the eyelids. Before birth and in adulthood, the FOXL2 protein regulates the growth and division (proliferation) of hormone-producing ovarian cells called granulosa cells. This protein is also involved in the breakdown of fats, steroid hormones, and potentially harmful molecules called reactive oxygen species in the ovaries. The FOXL2 protein also plays a role in controlled cell death (apoptosis) in the ovaries.
Does the FOXL2 gene share characteristics with other genes?
The FOXL2 gene belongs to a family of genes called FOX (forkhead box genes).
A gene family is a group of genes that share important characteristics. Classifying individual genes into families helps researchers describe how genes are related to each other. For more information, see What are gene families? in the Handbook.
How are changes in the FOXL2 gene related to health conditions?
Where is the FOXL2 gene located?
Cytogenetic Location: 3q23
Molecular Location on chromosome 3: base pairs 138,944,224 to 138,947,140
(Homo sapiens Annotation Release 107, GRCh38.p2) (
The FOXL2 gene is located on the long (q) arm of chromosome 3 at position 23.
More precisely, the FOXL2 gene is located from base pair 138,944,224 to base pair 138,947,140 on chromosome 3.
See How do geneticists indicate the location of a gene? in the Handbook.
Where can I find additional information about FOXL2?
You and your healthcare professional may find the following resources about FOXL2 helpful.
You may also be interested in these resources, which are designed for genetics professionals and researchers.
What other names do people use for the FOXL2 gene or gene products?
See How are genetic conditions and genes named? in the Handbook.
Where can I find general information about genes?
The Handbook provides basic information about genetics in clear language.
These links provide additional genetics resources that may be useful.
What glossary definitions help with understanding FOXL2?
alanine ; amino acid ; apoptosis ; base pair ; blepharophimosis ; breakdown ; cancer ; cell ; cell proliferation ; cysteine ; deletion ; difficulty conceiving ; disability ; DNA ; egg ; gene ; hormone ; infertility ; inherited ; microcephaly ; mutation ; ovarian ; oxygen ; proliferation ; protein ; ptosis ; reactive oxygen species ; somatic mutation ; syndrome ; transcription ; transcription factor ; tryptophan ; tumor
You may find definitions for these and many other terms in the Genetics Home Reference Glossary.
See also Understanding Medical Terminology.
References (12 links)
The resources on this site should not be used as a substitute for professional medical care or advice. Users seeking information about a personal genetic disease, syndrome, or condition should consult with a qualified healthcare professional. See How can I find a genetics professional in my area? in the Handbook.