Tumor necrosis factor α stimulates AP-1 activity through prolonged activation of the c-Jun kinase

John K. Westwick, Christoff Weitzel, Audrey Minden, Michael Karin, David A. Brenner

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Tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα) has multiple biological functions including the prolonged activation of the collagenase and c-jun genes, which are regulated via their AP-1 binding sites. We show that incubating human fibroblasts with TNFα induces prolonged activation of JNK, the c-Jun kinase, which phosphorylates the transactivation domain of c-Jun. Furthermore, an immune complex kinase assay specifically demonstrates that TNFα stimulates the activity of JNK1, the recently described predominant form of JNK. TNFα also produces a small and transient increase in extracellular signal- regulated kinase (ERK) activity and no measured increase in Raf-1 kinase activity. On the other hand, epidermal growth factor causes a prolonged activation of Raf-1 kinase and ERK activity and a smaller, more transient activation of JNK, whereas the phorbol ester phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate causes a small stimulation of Raf-1 kinase and a pronounced stimulation of ERK activity. The activation of JNK by TNFα does not correlate with Raf-1 or ERK activity. The kinetics of Raf-1, ERK, and JNK induction by epidermal growth factor, phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate, or TNFα indicate distinct mechanisms of activation in human fibroblasts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)26396-26401
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number42
StatePublished - Oct 21 1994

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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