Background: Macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) was firstly described in the
1960s as a pleiotropic cytokine affecting a variety of immune cells. Different physiological functions
mainly involving inflammatory reactions such as chemokine-like function and regulating systemic
stress responses have been reported.
Objective: In several clinical studies the use of MIF as a biomarker has been investigated promising
support for diseases with an inflammatory aspect such as sepsis, systemic infections and autoimmune
diseases. This article in detail reviews clinical data and evaluates the function as biomarker focusing
on inflammatory and autoimmune diseases.
Conclusion: Recent studies suggest MIF to be a marker for different inflammatory diseases and might
serve as therapeutic target in the future.
Keywords: MIF, biomarker, infectious disease, autoimmune disease, cytokine, CD74, CXCR.
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