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Mol Cell Biol. 2005 May;25(9):3670-81.

Role of MLK3 in the regulation of mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling cascades.

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  • 1Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Program in Molecular Medicine, University of Massachusetts Medical School, 373 Plantation St., Worcester, MA 01605, USA.


Mixed-lineage protein kinase 3 (MLK3) is a member of the mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase kinase kinase group that has been implicated in multiple signaling cascades, including the NF-kappaB pathway and the extracellular signal-regulated kinase, c-Jun NH(2)-terminal kinase (JNK), and p38 MAP kinase pathways. Here, we examined the effect of targeted disruption of the murine Mlk3 gene. Mlk3(-/-) mice were found to be viable and healthy. Primary embryonic fibroblasts prepared from these mice exhibited no major signaling defects. However, we did find that MLK3 deficiency caused a selective reduction in tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-stimulated JNK activation. Together, these data demonstrate that MLK3 contributes to the TNF signaling pathway that activates JNK.

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