Cyclin-dependent kinase-5 is a key molecule in tumor necrosis factor-α-induced insulin resistance

Atsushi Nohara, Shuichi Okada, Kihachi Ohshima, Jeffrey E. Pessin, Masatomo Mori

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


The mechanism of TNF-α-induced insulin resistance has remained unresolved with evidence for down-regulation of insulin effector targets effects or blockade of proximal as well as distal insulin signaling events depending upon the dose, time, and cell type examined. To address this issue we examined the acute actions of TNF-α in differentiated 3T3L1 adipocytes. Acute (5-15 min) treatment with 20 ng/ml (∼0.8 nM) TNF-α had no significant effect on IRS1-associated phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase. In contrast, TNF-α increased insulin-stimulated cyclin-dependent kinase-5 (CDK5) phosphorylation on tyrosine residue 15 through an Erk-dependent pathway and up-regulated the expression of the CDK5 regulator protein p35. In parallel, TNF-α stimulation also resulted in the phosphorylation and GTP loading of the Rho family GTP-binding protein, TC10α. TNF-α enhanced the depolymerization of cortical F-actin and inhibited insulin-stimulated glucose transporter-4 (GLUT4) translocation. Treatment with the MEK inhibitor, PD98059, blocked the TNF-α-induced increase in CDK5 phosphorylation and the depolymerization of cortical F-actin. Conversely, siRNA-mediated knockdown of CDK5 or treatment with the MEK inhibitor restored the impaired insulin-stimulated GLUT4 translocation induced by TNF-α. Furthermore, siRNA-mediated knockdown of p44/42 Erk also rescued the TNF-α inhibition of insulin-stimulated GLUT4 translocation. Together, these data demonstrate that TNF-α-mediated insulin resistance of glucose uptake can occur through a MEK/Erk-dependent activation of CDK5.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)33457-33465
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number38
StatePublished - Sep 23 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Cyclin-dependent kinase-5 is a key molecule in tumor necrosis factor-α-induced insulin resistance'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this