CD74 in antigen presentation, inflammation, and cancers of the gastrointestinal tract

World J Gastroenterol. 2009 Jun 21;15(23):2855-61. doi: 10.3748/wjg.15.2855.


CD74 is a protein whose initial role in antigen presentation was recognized two decades ago. Recent studies have revealed that it has additional functions as a receptor for macrophage migration inhibitory factor and as a receptor for an important human pathogen, Helicobacter pylori (H pylori). The role of CD74 as a receptor is important because after binding of migration inhibitory factor or H pylori, NF-kappaB and Erk1/2 activation occurs, along with the induction of proinflammatory cytokine secretion. This review provides an up-to-date account of the functions of CD74 and how it might be involved in inflammation and cancer within the gastrointestinal tract.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antigen Presentation / immunology*
  • Antigens, Differentiation, B-Lymphocyte / immunology*
  • Gastrointestinal Neoplasms / immunology*
  • Helicobacter Infections / immunology
  • Helicobacter pylori / immunology
  • Histocompatibility Antigens Class II / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / immunology*
  • Interleukin-8 / immunology
  • Macrophage Migration-Inhibitory Factors / immunology
  • Protein Isoforms / immunology
  • Signal Transduction / immunology


  • Antigens, Differentiation, B-Lymphocyte
  • Histocompatibility Antigens Class II
  • Interleukin-8
  • Macrophage Migration-Inhibitory Factors
  • Protein Isoforms
  • invariant chain