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Clinical trials
Journal: Nature reviews. Immunology
For more than a quarter of a century, macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) has been a mysterious cytokine. In recent years, MIF has assumed an important role as a pivotal regulator of innate immunity. MIF is an integral component of the host antimicrobial alarm system and stress response that promotes the pro-inflammatory functions of immune cells. A rapidly increasing amount of literature indicates that MIF is implicated in the pathogenesis of sepsis, and inflammatory and autoimmune diseases, suggesting that MIF-directed therapies might offer new treatment opportunities for human diseases in the future.
Journal: Nature medicine
The cytokine macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) plays a critical role in inflammatory diseases and atherogenesis. We identify the chemokine receptors CXCR2 and CXCR4 as functional receptors for MIF. MIF triggered G(alphai)- and integrin-dependent arrest and chemotaxis of monocytes and T cells, rapid integrin activation and calcium influx through CXCR2 or CXCR4. MIF competed with cognate ligands for CXCR4 and CXCR2 binding, and directly bound to CXCR2. CXCR2 and CD74 formed a receptor complex, and monocyte arrest elicited by MIF in inflamed or atherosclerotic arteries involved both CXCR2 and CD74. In vivo, Mif deficiency impaired monocyte adhesion to the arterial wall in atherosclerosis-prone mice, and MIF-induced leukocyte recruitment required Il8rb (which encodes Cxcr2). Blockade of Mif but not of canonical ligands of Cxcr2 or Cxcr4 in mice with advanced atherosclerosis led to plaque regression and reduced monocyte and T-cell content in plaques. By activating both CXCR2 and CXCR4, MIF displays chemokine-like functions and acts as a major regulator of inflammatory cell recruitment and atherogenesis. Targeting MIF in individuals with manifest atherosclerosis can potentially be used to treat this condition.
Journal: Nature cell biology
Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas (PDACs) are highly metastatic with poor prognosis, mainly due to delayed detection. We hypothesized that intercellular communication is critical for metastatic progression. Here, we show that PDAC-derived exosomes induce liver pre-metastatic niche formation in naive mice and consequently increase liver metastatic burden. Uptake of PDAC-derived exosomes by Kupffer cells caused transforming growth factor β secretion and upregulation of fibronectin production by hepatic stellate cells. This fibrotic microenvironment enhanced recruitment of bone marrow-derived macrophages. We found that macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) was highly expressed in PDAC-derived exosomes, and its blockade prevented liver pre-metastatic niche formation and metastasis. Compared with patients whose pancreatic tumours did not progress, MIF was markedly higher in exosomes from stage I PDAC patients who later developed liver metastasis. These findings suggest that exosomal MIF primes the liver for metastasis and may be a prognostic marker for the development of PDAC liver metastasis.