Use of the Pharmacological Inhibitor BX795 to Study the Regulation and Physiological Roles of TBK1 and I kappa B Kinase epsilon A DISTINCT UPSTREAM KINASE MEDIATES SER-172 PHOSPHORYLATION AND ACTIVATION

Kristopher Clark, Lorna Plater, Mark Peggie, Philip Cohen

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    225 Citations (Scopus)


    TANK-binding kinase 1 (TBK1) and I kappa B kinase epsilon (IKK epsilon) regulate the production of Type 1 interferons during bacterial and viral infection, but the lack of useful pharmacological inhibitors has hampered progress in identifying additional physiological roles of these protein kinases and how they are regulated. Here we demonstrate that BX795, a potent and relatively specific inhibitor of TBK1 and IKK epsilon, blocked the phosphorylation, nuclear translocation, and transcriptional activity of interferon regulatory factor 3 and, hence, the production of interferon-beta in macrophages stimulated with poly(I: C) or lipopolysaccharide (LPS). In contrast, BX795 had no effect on the canonical NF kappa B signaling pathway. Although BX795 blocked the autophosphorylation of overexpressed TBK1 and IKK epsilon at Ser-172 and, hence, the autoactivation of these protein kinases, it did not inhibit the phosphorylation of endogenous TBK1 and IKK epsilon at Ser-172 in response to LPS, poly(I: C), interleukin-1 alpha (IL-1 alpha), or tumor necrosis factor alpha and actually enhanced the LPS, poly(I: C), and IL-1 alpha-stimulated phosphorylation of this residue. These results demonstrate that the phosphorylation of Ser-172 and the activation of TBK1 and IKK epsilon are catalyzed by a distinct protein kinase(s) in vivo and that TBK1 and IKK epsilon control a feedback loop that limits their activation by LPS, poly(I: C) and IL-1 alpha (but not tumor necrosis factor alpha) to prevent the hyperactivation of these enzymes.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)14136-14146
    Number of pages11
    JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
    Issue number21
    Publication statusPublished - 22 May 2009


    • INNATE
    • TANK

    Cite this