Using a series of insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) receptor mutants, we have attempted to define domains required for transmitting the antiapoptotic signal from the receptor and to compare these domains with those required for mitogenesis or transformation. In FL5.12 cells transfected with wild-type IGF-I receptors, IGF-I affords protection from interleukin 3 withdrawal but is not mitogenic. An IGF-I receptor lacking a functional ATP binding site provided no protection from apoptosis. However, receptors mutated at tyrosine residue 950 or in the tyrosine cluster (1131, 1135, and 1136) within the kinase domain remained capable of suppressing apoptosis, although such mutations are known to inactivate transforming and mitogenic functions. In the C terminus of the IGF-I receptor, two mutations, one at tyrosine 1251 and one which replaced residues histidine 1293 and lysine 1294, abolished the antiapoptotic function, whereas mutation of the four serines at 1280 to 1283 did not. Interestingly, receptors truncated at the C terminus had enhanced antiapoptotic function. In Rat-1/ c-MycER fibroblasts, the Y950F mutant and the tyrosine cluster mutant could still provide protection from c-Myc-induced apoptosis, whereas mutant Y1250/1251F could not. These studies demonstrate that the domains of the IGF-I receptor required for its antiapoptotic function are distinct from those required for its proliferation or transformation functions and suggest that domains of the receptor required for inhibition of apoptosis are necessary but not sufficient for transformation.