Resistin and endothelin (ET)-1 have been reported to inhibit adipogenesis and regulate adipocyte insulin resistance, respectively. Although both hormones interact with each other, the exact signaling pathway of ET-1 to act on resistin gene expression is still unknown. Using 3T3-L1 adipocytes, we investigated the signaling pathways involved in ET-1-stimulated resistin gene expression. The up-regulation of resistin mRNA expression by ET-1 depends on concentration and timing. The concentration of ET-1 that increased resistin mRNAlevels by 100%-250% was approximately 100nMfor a range of 0.25-12 hours of treatment. Treatment with actinomycin D blocked ET-1-increased resistin mRNA levels, suggesting that the effect of ET-1 requires new mRNA synthesis. Treatment with an inhibitor of the ET type-A receptor, such as N-[1-Formyl-N-[N-[(hexahydro-1H- azepin-1-yl)carbonyl]-L-leucyl]-D-tryptophyl]-D-tryptophan (BQ610), but not with the ET type-B receptor antagonist N-[(cis-2,6-Dimethyl-1-piperidinyl)carbonyl]- 4-methyl-L-leucyl-1-(methoxycarbonyl)-D-tryptophyl-D-norleucine (BQ788), blocked ET-1, increased the levels of resistin mRNA, and phosphorylated levels of downstream signaling molecules, such as ERK1/2, c-Jun N-terminal kinases (JNKs), protein kinase B (AKT), and signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3). Moreover, pretreatment of specific inhibitors of either ERK1/2 (1,4-diamino-2,3-dicyano-1,4-bis[2-aminophenylthio] butadiene [U0126] and 2-(2-amino-3-methoxyphenyl)-4H-1-benzopyran-4-one [PD98059], two inhibitors of MEK1), JNKs (SP600125), phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase/AKT (LY294002 and Wortmannin), or Janus kinase 2 (JAK2)/STAT3 ((E)-2-Cyano-3-(3,4-dihydrophenyl)- N-(phenylmethyl)-2-propenamide, AG490) prevented ET-1-increased levels of resistin mRNA and reduced the ET-1-stimulated phosphorylation of ERK1/2, JNKs, AKT, and STAT3, respectively. However, the p38 kinase antagonist 4-[5-(4-Fluorophenyl)-2-[4-(methylsulfonyl)phenyl]-1H-imidazol-4-yl] pyridine(SB203580)did not alter the effect of ET-1.These result simply that ET type-Areceptor, ERK1/2, JNKs, AKT, and JAK2, but not ET type-Breceptor or p38, are necessary for the ET-1 stimulation of resistin gene expression. In vivo observations that ET-1 increased resist in mRNA and protein levels in sc and epididymal adipose tissues support the in vitro findings.