Acetaminophen (APAP), a widely used analgesic and antipyretic that is considered to be relatively safe at recommended doses, is the leading cause of drug-induced liver failure in the United States. 3-Hydroxyacetanilide (AMAP), a regioisomer of acetaminophen is useful as a comparative tool for studying APAP-induced toxicity since it is non-toxic relative to APAP. TGF-alpha transgenic mouse hepatocytes were treated with both isomers to investigate mitogen-activated protein kinase cascades in order to differentiate their toxicological outcomes. Mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) cascade expression and activation were measured using microarray and Bioplex technologies, respectively. APAP treatment led to c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) activation, whereas AMAP treatment led to the activation of extracellular-signal-regulated protein kinase (ERK). The microarray data suggested APAP treatment may upregulate gene expression at multiple levels of the JNK cascade including a JNK-related scaffold protein. Expression data was related to phosphoprotein levels using the Bioplex system. APAP treatment led to a significant activation of JNK compared to its regioisomer. In contrast, microarray analysis of AMAP showed a slight upregulation of ERK gene activity. Furthermore, Bioplex data showed AMAP treatment led to significant ERK phosphorylation compared to APAP. Cell viability assays confirmed that APAP-induced activation of JNK was related to higher rates of cell death, whereas activation of ERK by AMAP may be cytoprotective.