The non-mammalian MIF superfamily.

TitleThe non-mammalian MIF superfamily.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsSparkes, A., P. De Baetselier, K. Roelants, C. De Trez, S. Magez, J. A. Van Ginderachter, G. Raes, R. Bucala, and B. Stijlemans
Date Published2016 Oct 12

Macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) was first described as a cytokine 50 years ago, and emerged in mammals as a pleiotropic protein with pro-inflammatory, chemotactic, and growth-promoting activities. In addition, MIF has gained substantial attention as a pivotal upstream mediator of innate and adaptive immune responses and with pathologic roles in several diseases. Of less importance in mammals is an intrinsic but non-physiologic enzymatic activity that points to MIF's evolution from an ancient defense molecule. Therefore, it is not surprising that mif-like genes also have been found across a range of different organisms including bacteria, plants, ‎protozoa, helminths, molluscs, arthropods, fish, amphibians and birds. While Genebank analysis identifying mif-like genes across species is extensive, contained herein is an overview of the non-mammalian MIF-like proteins that have been most well studied experimentally. For many of these organisms, MIF contributes to an innate defense system or plays a role in development. For parasitic organisms however, MIF appears to function as a virulence factor aiding in the establishment or persistence of infection by modulating the host immune response. Consequently, a combined targeting of both parasitic and host MIF could lead to more effective treatment strategies for parasitic diseases of socioeconomic importance.

Alternate JournalImmunobiology
PubMed ID27780588
Grant ListR01 AI042310 / AI / NIAID NIH HHS / United States
R01 AI110452 / AI / NIAID NIH HHS / United States
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