MEKK1 binds directly to the c-Jun N-terminal kinases/stress-activated protein kinases

Shuichan Xu, Melanie H. Cobb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

102 Scopus citations


Mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinases mediate responses to a wide array of cellular stimuli. These cascades consist of a MAP kinase or extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK), activated by a MAP/ERK kinase (MEK), in turn activated by a MEK kinase (MEKK). MEKK1 has been shown to be a strong activator of the c-Jun N-terminal kinase/stress-actived protein kinase (JNK/SAPK) pathway. We report here that JNK/SAPK hinds directly to the N- terminal, noncatalytic domain of MEKK1 in vitro and in transfected cells. Immobilized MEKK1-derived peptides extract JNK/SAPK selectively from cell lysates. MEKK1 coimmunoprecipitates with multiple JNK/SAPK isoforms in transfected cells. Expression of the N terminus of MEKK1 lacking the kinase domain increases activation of endogenous JNK/SAPK by MEKK1. The data are consistent with a model in which MEKK1-JNK/SAPK binding facilitates the receipt of signals from upstream inputs and localizes JNK/SAPK to intracellular targets of the pathway.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)32056-32060
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number51
StatePublished - Dec 19 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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