Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is a typical thyroid autoimmune disease and Th17 cells are crucial in its development. In recent years, MIF (Macrophage Migration Inhibitory Factor) has been found to promote the secretion of IL-17A and the production and differentiation of Th17 cells. However, the specific mechanism of it remains unclear. Here, we found that the expression of MIF, IL-17A and HVEM (Herpes Virus Entry Mediator) were up-regulated in HT patients. The proportion of Th17 cells in peripheral blood mononuclear cells was positively correlated with the serum MIF protein level. We further found that the expression of HVEM and the phosphorylation level of NF-κB in peripheral blood mononuclear cells of HT patients were significantly increased. Therefore, we speculated that MIF promotes Th17 cell differentiation through HVEM and NF-κB signaling pathways. Further mechanism studies showed that MIF could directly bind to HVEM, and the stimulation of rhMIF in vitro could increase the expression of HVEM and activate NF-κB signaling pathways to promote Th17 cell differentiation. After blocking HVEM with HVEM antibody, the effect of MIF on Th17 cell differentiation disappeared. The results above show that the differentiation of Th17 cells is promoted by MIF combined with HVEM through NF-κB signaling pathways. Our research provides a new theory to the regulation mechanism of Th17 cell differentiation and gives hint to new potential therapeutic targets for HT.Copyright © 2023 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.