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Macrophage activating factor

abbr. MAF (a term with multiple meanings). This activity was initially observed in conditioned medium of lymphocytes after cell activation by mitogens and antigens. MAF activates macrophages and allows them to act as cytotoxic cells that nonspecifically kill tumor cells. MAF is more or less an operational definition for a particular biological activity rather than the name of a distinct factor. The main factor responsible for MAF activity is IFN-gamma. Some of the MAF activity is due to GM-CSF or M-CSF, IL3, or other factors.

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