Biochemistry, Immunology. a protein that is released by activated macrophages as an immune system defense and, when the defense is overwhelmed, is a cause of cachexia or toxic shock: in humans, identical with tumor necrosis factor.

Nearby words

  1. cache la poudre,
  2. cache memory,
  3. cache storage,
  4. cache-sexe,
  5. cachectic,
  6. cachepot,
  7. cachet,
  8. cacheu,
  9. cachexia,
  10. cachexia hypophysiopriva

Origin of cachectin

< Greek kachekt(ikós) unwell (see cachexia, -tic) + -in2 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Medicine definitions for cachectin




A polypeptide hormone produced by macrophages that releases fat and reduces the concentration of enzymes needed to produce and store fat.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.