TRAF2 Must Bind to Cellular Inhibitors of Apoptosis for Tumor Necrosis Factor (TNF) to Efficiently Activate NF-κB and to Prevent TNF-induced Apoptosis Academic Article uri icon


  • Tumor necrosis factor (TNF) receptor-associated factor-2 (TRAF2) binds to cIAP1 and cIAP2 (cIAP1/2) and recruits them to the cytoplasmic domain of several members of the TNF receptor (TNFR) superfamily, including the TNF-TNFR1 ligand-receptor complex. Here, we define a cIAP1/2-interacting motif (CIM) within the TRAF-N domain of TRAF2, and we use TRAF2 CIM mutants to determine the role of TRAF2 and cIAP1/2 individually, and the TRAF2-cIAP1/2 interaction, in TNFR1-dependent signaling. We show that both the TRAF2 RING domain and the TRAF2 CIM are required to regulate NF-kappaB-inducing kinase stability and suppress constitutive noncanonical NF-kappaB activation. Conversely, following TNFR1 stimulation, cells bearing a CIM-mutated TRAF2 showed reduced canonical NF-kappaB activation and TNF-induced RIPK1 ubiquitylation. Remarkably, the RING domain of TRAF2 was dispensable for these functions. However, like the TRAF2 CIM, the RING domain of TRAF2 was required for protection against TNF-induced apoptosis. These results show that TRAF2 has anti-apoptotic signaling roles in addition to promoting NF-kappaB signaling and that efficient activation of NF-kappaB by TNFR1 requires the recruitment of cIAP1/2 by TRAF2.


  • Vince, James E
  • Pantaki, Delara
  • Feltham, Rebecca
  • Mace, Peter D
  • Cordier, Stephanie M
  • Schmukle, Anna C
  • Davidson, Angelina J
  • Callus, Bernard A
  • Wong, Wendy Wei-Lynn
  • Gentle, Ian E
  • Carter, Holly
  • Lee, Erinna F
  • Walczak, Henning
  • Day, Catherine L
  • Vaux, David L
  • Silke, John

publication date

  • December 18, 2009