Chronic exposure to elevated concentration of free fatty acids (FFA) has been verified to induce endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress, which leads to pancreatic β-cell apoptosis. As one of the medium and long chain FFA receptors, GPR40 is highly expressed in pancreatic β cells, mediates both acute and chronic effects of FFA on β-cell function, but the role of GPR40 in FFA-induced β-cell apoptosis remains unclear. In this study, we investigated the possible effects of GPR40 in palmitate-induced MIN6 β-cell apoptosis, and found that DC260126, a novel small molecular antagonist of GPR40, could protect MIN6 β cells from palmitate-induced ER stress and apoptosis. Similar results were observed in GPR40-deficient MIN6 cells, indicating that palmitate-induced β-cell apoptosis is at least partially dependent on ER stress pathway via GRP40. J. Cell. Biochem. 113: 1152–1158, 2012. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.