Efficient mid-IR interband cascade (IC) lasers have been developed based on III-V semiconductor materials with lasing emission covering a wavelength range from 2.7 to 5.6 microns. These IC lasers reuse injected electrons in cascade stages for photon generation with high quantum efficiency to achieve high output powers. Also, IC lasers have a low threshold current density with a very efficient use of applied voltage, resulting in reduced power consumption. Single-mode distributed feedback lasers have been made, and integrated into aircraft and balloon instruments which made atmospheric measurements of CH4 and HCl. In this work, the characteristics of IC lasers and their recent developments are reviewed.