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PLoS One. 2013;8(3):e58718. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0058718. Epub 2013 Mar 11.

Macrophage migration inhibitory factor inhibition is deleterious for high-fat diet-induced cardiac dysfunction.

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  • 1EA4484, Physiology Department, Lille 2 University, Lille, France.



Development of metabolic syndrome is associated with impaired cardiac performance, mitochondrial dysfunction and pro-inflammatory cytokine increase, such as the macrophage migration inhibitory factor MIF. Depending on conditions, MIF may exert both beneficial and deleterious effects on the myocardium. Therefore, we tested whether pharmacological inhibition of MIF prevented or worsened metabolic syndrome-induced myocardial dysfunction.


C57BL/6J mice were fed for ten weeks with 60% fat-enriched diet (HFD) or normal diet (ND). MIF inhibition was obtained by injecting mice twice a week with ISO-1, for three consecutive weeks. Then, triglycerides, cholesterol, fat mass, glucose intolerance, insulin resistance, ex vivo cardiac contractility, animal energetic substrate utilization assessed by indirect calorimetry and mitochondrial respiration and biogenesis were evaluated. HFD led to fat mass increase, dyslipidemia, glucose intolerance and insulin resistance. ISO-1 did not alter these parameters. However, MIF inhibition was responsible for HFD-induced cardiac dysfunction worsening. Mouse capacity to increase oxygen consumption in response to exercise was reduced in HFD compared to ND, and further diminished in ISO-1-treated HFD group. Mitochondrial respiration was reduced in HFD mice, treated or not with ISO-1. Compared to ND, mitochondrial biogenesis signaling was upregulated in the HFD as demonstrated by mitochondrial DNA amount and PGC-1α expression. However, this increase in biogenesis was blocked by ISO-1 treatment.


MIF inhibition achieved by ISO-1 was responsible for a reduction in HFD-induced mitochondrial biogenesis signaling that could explain majored cardiac dysfunction observed in HFD mice treated with MIF inhibitor.

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