Lack of p38 MAP kinase activation in TRAIL-resistant cells is not related to the resistance to TRAIL-mediated cell death

Lidong Zhang, Hongbo Zhu, John J. Davis, Dietmar Jacob, Shuhong Wu, Fuminori Teranishi, Angelica Gutierrez, Yibin Wang, Bingliang Fang

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15 Citations (Scopus)


Activation of MAP kinases is involved in various cellular processes, including immunoregulation, inflammation, cell growth, cell differentiation, and cell death. To investigate the role of p38 MAP kinase activation in the signaling pathway of TRAIL-mediated apoptosis, we compared TRAIL-mediated MAP kinase activation in TRAIL-susceptible human colon cancer cell line DLD1 and TRAIL-resistant DLD1/TRAIL-R cells. TRAIL-mediated activation of ERK occurred in both cell lines. In contrast, both DLD1 and DLD1/TRAIL-R cells showed no obvious JNK activation after treatment with TRAIL. Interestingly, TRAIL-mediated activation of p38 MAP kinases was observed in DLD1 cells but not in DLD1/TRAIL-R cells. However, activation of p38 MAP kinases was observed in both DLD1 and DLD1/TRAIL-R cells after treatment with anisomycin. Furthermore, inhibiting activated p38 MAP kinases with known inhibitors or with an adenovector expressing dominant negative p38α did not block TRAIL-mediated cell death in DLD1 cells. Moreover, activation of p38 MAP kinases by adenovectors expressing constitutive MKK3 or MKK6 (Ad/MKK3bE or Ad/MKK6bE) did not induce cell death in either DLD1 or DLD1/TRAIL-R cell lines. Our results suggest that activation of p38 MAP kinases does not play a major role in TRAIL-mediated apoptosis in DLD1 cells and that lack of TRAIL-mediated p38 MAP kinase activation may not be the mechanism of TRAIL-resistance in DLD1/TRAIL-R cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)296-301
Number of pages6
JournalCancer Biology and Therapy
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2004
Externally publishedYes



  • Apoptosis
  • Cancer
  • p38 MAP kinases
  • Resistance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Oncology
  • Pharmacology
  • Cancer Research

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