Involved in induction of the epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT), formation and maintenance of embryonic mesoderm, growth arrest, survival and cell migration. Binds to 3 E-boxes of the E-cadherin/CDH1 gene promoter and to the promoters of CLDN7 and KRT8 and, in association with histone demethylase KDM1A which it recruits to the promoters, causes a decrease in dimethylated H3K4 levels and represses transcription. Associates with EGR1 and SP1 to mediate tetradecanoyl phorbol acetate (TPA)-induced up-regulation of CDKN2B, possibly by binding to the CDKN2B promoter region 5'-TCACA-3. In addition, may also activate the CDKN2B promoter by itself.
 Aldehyde dehydrogenase 1 is a putative marker for cancer stem cells in head and neck squamous cancer.
Chen, Y. C., et al. (2009). Biochem Biophys Res Commun 385(3): 307-313.. [ 19450560 ]
 Overexpression of snail induces epithelial-mesenchymal transition and a cancer stem cell-like phenotype in human colorectal cancer cells.
Fan, F., et al. (2012). Cancer Med 1(1): 5-16.. [ 23342249 ]