Research ArticleKidney Disease

The protective role of macrophage migration inhibitory factor in acute kidney injury after cardiac surgery

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Science Translational Medicine  16 May 2018:
Vol. 10, Issue 441, eaan4886
DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.aan4886

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MIF muffles kidney injury

Patients undergoing open-heart surgery are susceptible to complications, including acute kidney injury (AKI). Stoppe et al. observed that patients who had high serum concentrations of macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) after cardiac surgery had lower risk of AKI. Renal ischemia-reperfusion injury induced more inflammation and kidney cell death in mice lacking Mif than in wild-type mice. Treating isolated kidney cells with MIF protected against hypoxia-induced cell death. Mice treated with MIF or a soluble form of CD74 (MIF receptor) showed reduced kidney injury after ischemia-reperfusion. This study suggests that MIF may protect the kidney from ischemia-reperfusion injury.