Ligand for the receptor-type protein-tyrosine kinase KIT. Plays an essential role in the regulation of cell survival and proliferation, hematopoiesis, stem cell maintenance, gametogenesis, mast cell development, migration and function, and in melanogenesis. KITLG/SCF binding can activate several signaling pathways. Promotes phosphorylation of PIK3R1, the regulatory subunit of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase, and subsequent activation of the kinase AKT1. KITLG/SCF and KIT also transmit signals via GRB2 and activation of RAS, RAF1 and the MAP kinases MAPK1/ERK2 and/or MAPK3/ERK1. KITLG/SCF and KIT promote activation of STAT family members STAT1, STAT3 and STAT5. KITLG/SCF and KIT promote activation of PLCG1, leading to the production of the cellular signaling molecules diacylglycerol and inositol 1,4,5- trisphosphate. KITLG/SCF acts synergistically with other cytokines, probably interleukins. Homodimer, non-covalently linked (Probable). Heterotetramer with KIT, binding two KIT molecules; thereby mediates KIT dimerization and subsequent activation by autophosphorylation. Belongs to the SCF family. 3 isoforms of the human protein are produced by alternative splicing. Note: This description may include information from UniProtKB.