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Role of Macrophage Migration Inhibitory Factor (MIF) in Melanoma

Department of Human Anatomy and Experimental Oncology, Université de Mons (UMons), Research Institute for Health Sciences and Technology, 7000 Mons, Belgium
Laboratory of Oncology and Experimental Surgery, Institut Jules Bordet, Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), 1000 Brussels, Belgium
Department of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology, Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), CHU Saint-Pierre, 1000 Brussels, Belgium
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Cancers 2019, 11(4), 529;
Received: 19 March 2019 / Revised: 5 April 2019 / Accepted: 10 April 2019 / Published: 12 April 2019
PDF [566 KB, uploaded 12 April 2019]


Macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) is an inflammatory cytokine involved in the carcinogenesis of many cancer types. Here, we review the published experimental and clinical data for MIF and its involvement in melanoma. All reported data show that MIF is overexpressed in melanoma cells, especially in case of metastatic disease. Clinical studies also indicate that high MIF expression is positively associated with aggressiveness of the disease. Some data also highlight the implication of MIF in angiogenesis, immunity and metastasis in melanoma cell lines, as well as the availability of different therapeutic options targeting MIF for the treatment of metastatic melanoma. Indeed, the main problem in metastatic melanoma is the lack of long-term effective treatment. This is linked to the capacity of melanoma cells to mutate very quickly and/or activate alternative signaling pathways. Thus, MIF targeting therapies could provide a new effective way of treating melanoma. Moreover, cell sensitivity to MIF depletion does not correlate with the BRAF mutational status. Regarding the fact that many melanoma patients carry a BRAF mutation, and that they develop resistance to BRAF inhibitors, this observation is very interesting as MIF inhibitors could be used to treat many patients in relapse after treatment with an inhibitor of the mutant BRAF protein. View Full-Text
Keywords: melanoma; MIF; immunity; metastasis; combined therapies melanoma; MIF; immunity; metastasis; combined therapies

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Soumoy, L.; Kindt, N.; Ghanem, G.; Saussez, S.; Journe, F. Role of Macrophage Migration Inhibitory Factor (MIF) in Melanoma. Cancers 2019, 11, 529.

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