DUX4 (double homeobox 4)

Certainty Style Key

Certainty styling is being phased out topic by topic.

Hover over keys for definitions:
True   Likely   Speculative
Human Uniqueness Compared to "Great Apes": 
Likely Difference
Human Universality: 
Individual Universal (All Individuals Everywhere)
MOCA Domain: 
MOCA Topic Authors: 

Homeobox domains are a ~60 amino acid DNA binding motif conserved in many transcription factors involved in development (e.g. Hox genes). Double homeobox genes are a class of homeobox genes, specific to placental mammals, comprised of two closely spaced PRD-class homeobox domains. The Y-chromosome contains four DUX4-like genes, DUX4L16-19. While all four copies are present in both human and chimpanzee, three of the four copies in the chimpanzee genome have acquired premature stop codons leaving only DUX4L16 still able to encode a functional protein. As DUX4L16 is retained in both human and chimpanzee, and the human copies of DUX4L17-19 have undergone accelerated evololution, it has been proposed that DUX4L17-19 underwent neo-functionalization.

Genetics Topic Attributes
Gene symbols follow the HUGO Gene Nomenclature Committee standard.
Gene Symbol Type of Human-Specific Changes
DUX4 (double homeobox 4) Accelerated Evolution


  1. A family history of DUX4: phylogenetic analysis of DUXA, B, C and Duxbl reveals the ancestral DUX gene., Leidenroth, Andreas, and Hewitt Jane E. , BMC Evol Biol, 2010, Volume 10, p.364, (2010)
  2. Complex evolution of a Y-chromosomal double homeobox 4 (DUX4)-related gene family in hominoids., Schmidt, Julia, Kirsch Stefan, Rappold Gudrun A., and Schempp Werner , PLoS One, 2009, Volume 4, Issue 4, p.e5288, (2009)
  3. Interchromosomal segmental duplications of the pericentromeric region on the human Y chromosome, Kirsch, Stefan, Weiß Birgit, Miner Tracie L., Waterston Robert H., Clark Royden A., Eichler Evan E., Münch Claudia, Schempp Werner, and Rappold Gudrun , Genome Research, 02/2005, Volume 15, Issue 2, p.195 - 204, (2005)