The Journal of biological chemistry

IB1 reduces cytokine-induced apoptosis of insulin-secreting cells.

PMID 10748095


IB1/JIP-1 is a scaffold protein that interacts with upstream components of the c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) signaling pathway. IB1 is expressed at high levels in pancreatic beta cells and may therefore exert a tight control on signaling events mediated by JNK in these cells. Activation of JNK by interleukin 1 (IL-1beta) or by the upstream JNK constitutive activator DeltaMEKK1 promoted apoptosis in two pancreatic beta cell lines and decreased IB1 content by 50-60%. To study the functional consequences of the reduced IB1 content in beta cell lines, we used an insulin-secreting cell line expressing an inducible IB1 antisense RNA that lead to a 38% IB1 decrease. Reducing IB1 levels in these cells increased phosphorylation of c-Jun and increased the apoptotic rate in presence of IL-1beta. Nitric oxide production was not stimulated by expression of the IB1 antisense RNA. Complementary experiments indicated that overexpression of IB1 in insulin-producing cells prevented JNK-mediated activation of the transcription factors c-Jun, ATF2, and Elk1 and decreased IL-1beta- and DeltaMEKK1-induced apoptosis. These data indicate that IB1 plays an anti-apoptotic function in insulin-producing cells probably by controlling the activity of the JNK signaling pathway.