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Early lethality, functional NF-kappaB activation, and increased sensitivity to TNF-induced cell death in TRAF2-deficient mice.

Authors:
Yeh WC, Shahinian A, Speiser D, Kraunus J, Billia F, Wakeham A, de la Pompa JL, Ferrick D, Hum B, Iscove N, Ohashi P, Rothe M, Goeddel DV, Mak TW
Affiliation:
Journal:
Immunity

Abstract

TRAF2 is an intracellular signal-transducing protein recruited to the TNFR1 and TNFR2 receptors following TNF stimulation. To investigate the physiological role of TRAF2, we generated TRAF2-deficient mice. traf2-/- mice appeared normal at birth but became progressively runted and died prematurely. Atrophy of the thymus and spleen and depletion of B cell precursors also were observed. Thymocytes and other hematopoietic progenitors were highly sensitive to TNF-induced cell death and serum TNF levels were elevated in these TRAF2-deficient animals. Examination of traf2-/- cells revealed a severe reduction in TNF-mediated JNK/SAPK activation but a mild effect on NF-kappaB activation. These results suggest that TRAF2-independent pathways of NF-kappaB activation exist and that TRAF2 is required for an NF-kappaB-independent signal that protects against TNF-induced apoptosis.

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