Problem: Leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF) is multifunctional cytokine that displays biological activities in different cells, including endometrial cells. The aim of this study is to describe implications of LIF on a physiological function of endometrium.
Method of study: The role of LIF in the endometrial function is reviewed and summarized from the available literature.
Results: LIF plays an important role in a physiological function of endometrium. In human endometrial LIF expression depends on cellular localizations, steroid hormones, menstrual stages and a local cytokine network. Stronger LIF expression exists in an endometrial epithelium during a luteal phase of the menstrual cycle, which coincides with the time of an implantation. The impairments of the endometrial LIF expression may play a significant role in the pathological processes involving implantation and the infertility.
Conclusions: There is a substantial evidence that LIF is a potential regulator of the endometrial function and might be one of the factors that play a key role in human reproduction.