Insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) plays an important role in cell survival, proliferation, and differentiation. Diverse kinases, including AKT/protein kinase B, extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK), and c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), can be activated by IGF-I. Here, we show that the receptor-interacting protein (RIP), a key mediator of tumor necrosis factor-induced NF-kappaB and JNK activation, plays a key role in IGF-I receptor signaling. IGF-I induced a robust JNK activation in wild type but not RIP null (RIP-/-) mouse embryonic fibroblast cells. Reconstitution of RIP expression in the RIP-/- cells restored the induction of JNK by IGF-I, suggesting that RIP is essential in IGF-I-induced JNK activation. Reconstitution experiments with different RIP mutants further revealed that the death domain and the kinase activity of RIP are not required for IGF-I-induced JNK activation. Interestingly, the AKT and ERK activation by IGF-I was normal in RIP-/- cells. The phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase inhibitor, wortmannin, did not affect IGF-I-induced JNK activation. These results agree with previous studies showing that the IGF-I-induced JNK activation pathway is distinct from that of ERK and AKT activation. Additionally, physical interaction of ectopically expressed RIP and IGF-IRbeta was detected by co-immunoprecipitation assays. More importantly, RIP was recruited to the IGF-I receptor complex during IGF-I-induced signaling. Furthermore, we found that IGF-I-induced cell proliferation was impaired in RIP-/- cells. Taken together, our results indicate that RIP, a key factor in tumor necrosis factor signaling, also plays a pivotal role in IGF-I-induced JNK activation and cell proliferation.