Crystal Structure of MIF bound to a Novel Inhibitor, OXIM-11
[MIF_HUMAN] Genetic variations in MIF are associated with susceptibility to rheumatoid arthritis systemic juvenile (RASJ) [MIM:604302]. An inflammatory articular disorder with systemic-onset beginning before the age of 16. It represents a subgroup of juvenile arthritis associated with severe extraarticular features and occasionally fatal complications. During active phases of the disorder, patients display a typical daily spiking fever, an evanescent macular rash, lymphadenopathy, hepatosplenomegaly, serositis, myalgia and arthritis.
[MIF_HUMAN] Pro-inflammatory cytokine. Involved in the innate immune response to bacterial pathogens. The expression of MIF at sites of inflammation suggests a role as mediator in regulating the function of macrophages in host defense. Counteracts the anti-inflammatory activity of glucocorticoids. Has phenylpyruvate tautomerase and dopachrome tautomerase activity (in vitro), but the physiological substrate is not known. It is not clear whether the tautomerase activity has any physiological relevance, and whether it is important for cytokine activity. 
Publication Abstract from PubMed
Pharmacophores are chemical scaffolds upon which changes in chemical moieties (R-groups) at specific sites are made to identify a combination of R-groups that increases the therapeutic potency of a small molecule inhibitor while minimizing adverse effects. We developed a pharmacophore based on a carbonyloxime (OXIM) scaffold for macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF), a protein involved in the pathology of sepsis, to validate that inhibition of a catalytic site could produce therapeutic benefits. We studied the crystal structures of MIF.OXIM-based inhibitors and found two opposite orientations for binding to the active site that were dependent on the chemical structures of an R-group. One orientation was completely unexpected based on previous studies with hydroxyphenylpyruvate and (S,R)-3-(4-hydroxyphenyl)-4,5-dihydro-5-isoxazole acetic acid methyl ester (ISO-1). We further confirmed that the unexpected binding mode targets MIF in cellular studies by showing that one compound, OXIM-11, abolished the counter-regulatory activity of MIF on anti-inflammatory glucocorticoid action. OXIM-11 treatment of mice, initiated 24 h after the onset of cecal ligation and puncture-induced sepsis, significantly improved survival when compared with vehicle-treated controls, confirming that inhibition of the MIF catalytic site could produce therapeutic effects. The crystal structures of the MIF inhibitor complexes provide insight for further structure-based drug design efforts.
Alternative chemical modifications reverse the binding orientation of a pharmacophore scaffold in the active site of macrophage migration inhibitory factor.,Crichlow GV, Cheng KF, Dabideen D, Ochani M, Aljabari B, Pavlov VA, Miller EJ, Lolis E, Al-Abed Y J Biol Chem. 2007 Aug 10;282(32):23089-95. Epub 2007 May 25. PMID:17526494
From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.