Brachyury is the founding member of the T-box family of transcription factors, which is characterized by the N-terminal conserved DNA-binding T-domain. Brachyury is required in the early determination and differentiation of mesoderm.
Brachyury is essential for the formation of the posterior body in all vertebrates. Mutations in brachyury have been shown to result in vertebral malformations. In addition, dysregulation of brachyury may be involved in the formation of chordomas, malignant tumors in the spine.