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J Biol Chem. 2005 Jan 14;280(2):1132-41. Epub 2004 Nov 4.

c-Jun N-terminal kinase 3 deficiency protects neurons from axotomy-induced death in vivo through mechanisms independent of c-Jun phosphorylation.

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  • 1Neuroscience East, Ottawa Health Research Institute, Ontario, Canada.

Abstract

Both the transcription factor c-Jun and the c-Jun N-terminal kinases (JNKs) have been associated with neuronal loss in several death paradigms. JNK are key regulators of c-Jun and a common accepted model has been that JNKs mediate neuronal death through modulation of c-Jun activation. In the present study, we examined whether JNK2 and -3 (JNK members most associated with neuronal loss) deficiency can rescue neuronal loss caused by facial and sciatic nerve axotomy in the neonate in vivo. JNK2, JNK3, and JNK2/3 double-deficient neurons displayed significantly less death in the facial nerves of the CNS when compared with controls. JNK2 and JNK2/3 double-deficient animals also showed reduced c-Jun phosphorylation and induction following axotomy, consistent with the model that JNK acts to regulate death by activating c-Jun. Of significance, however, protection of facial nerves in JNK3-deficient animals was not accompanied by reduction in c-Jun activation. These results suggest that JNKs can mediate death independently of c-Jun. Importantly, the lack of correlation between JNK3 deficiency and c-Jun induction was not universal. In a sciatic axotomy model of neuronal injury in the neonate, death of DRG neurons was also reduced by JNK3 deficiency. However, in this case, c-Jun activation was also eliminated.

PMID:
15528206
DOI:
10.1074/jbc.M410127200
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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