Mechanism of p38 MAP kinase activation in vivo

UMMS Affiliation

Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences; Program in Molecular Medicine

Publication Date


Document Type



Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences


The p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) is activated in vitro by three different protein kinases: MKK3, MKK4, and MKK6. To examine the relative roles of these protein kinases in the mechanism of p38 MAP kinase activation in vivo, we examined the effect of disruption of the murine Mkk3, Mkk4, and Mkk6 genes on the p38 MAPK signaling pathway. We show that MKK3 and MKK6are essential for tumor necrosis factor-stimulated p38 MAPK activation. In contrast, ultraviolet radiation-stimulated p38 MAPK activation was mediated by MKK3, MKK4, and MKK6. Loss of p38 MAPK activation in the mutant cells was associated with defects in growth arrest and increased tumorigenesis. These data indicate that p38 MAPK is regulated by the coordinated and selective actions of three different protein kinases in response to cytokines and exposure to environmental stress.

DOI of Published Version



Genes Dev. 2003 Aug 15;17(16):1969-78. Epub 2003 Jul 31. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Genes and development

Related Resources

Link to article in PubMed

PubMed ID