The integral membrane protein linker for activation of T cells (LAT) is a central adapter protein in the T-cell receptor (TCR)-mediated signaling pathways. The cellular localization of LAT is extremely sensitive to intracellular redox balance alterations. Reduced intracellular levels of the antioxidant glutathione (GSH), a hallmark of chronic oxidative stress, resulted in the membrane displacement of LAT, abrogated TCR-mediated signaling and consequently hyporesponsiveness of T lymphocytes. The membrane displacement of LAT is accompanied by a considerable difference in the mobility of LAT upon native and nonreducing denaturing polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis analysis, a finding indicative of a conformational change. Targeted mutation of redox-sensitive cysteine residues within LAT created LAT mutants which remain membrane anchored under conditions of chronic oxidative stress. The expression of redox-insensitive LAT mutants allows for restoration of TCR-mediated signal transduction, whereas CD28-mediated signaling pathways remained impaired. These results are indicative that the membrane displacement of LAT as a result of redox balance alterations is a consequence of a conformational change interfering with the insertion of LAT into the plasma membrane. Conclusively, the data suggest a role for LAT as a crucial intermediate in the sensitivity of TCR signaling and hence T lymphocytes toward chronic oxidative stress.