Multiple functions of Maf in the regulation of cellular development and differentiation

Diabetes Metab Res Rev. 2015 Nov;31(8):773-8. doi: 10.1002/dmrr.2676. Epub 2015 Aug 18.


Cellular muscular aponeurotic fibrosarcoma (c-Maf) is a member of the large macrophage-activating factor family. C-Maf plays important roles in the morphogenetic processes and cellular differentiation of the lens, kidneys, liver, T cells and nervous system, and it is particularly important in pancreatic islet and erythroblastic island formation. However, the exact role of c-Maf remains to be elucidated. In this review, we summarize the research to clarify the functions of c-Maf in the cellular development and differentiation. The expression of c-Maf is higher in pancreatic duct cells than in pancreatic islet cells. Therefore, we suggest that pancreatic duct cells may be converted to the functional insulin-secreting cells by regulating c-Maf.

Keywords: c-Maf; diabetes mellitus; β cell.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cell Differentiation / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Insulin-Secreting Cells / cytology
  • Insulin-Secreting Cells / metabolism
  • Islets of Langerhans / cytology
  • Islets of Langerhans / metabolism*
  • Pancreas / cytology
  • Pancreas / metabolism*
  • Pancreatic Ducts / cytology
  • Pancreatic Ducts / metabolism*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-maf / metabolism*


  • MAF protein, human
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-maf