Dynamic Cross Talk Model of the Epithelial Innate Immune Response to Double-Stranded RNA Stimulation: Coordinated Dynamics Emerging from Cell-Level Noise
We present an integrated dynamical cross-talk model of the epithelial innate immune reponse (IIR) incorporating RIG-I and TLR3 as the two major pattern recognition receptors (PRR) converging on the RelA and IRF3 transcriptional effectors. bioPN simulations reproduce biologically relevant gene-and protein abundance measurements in response to time course, gene silencing and dose-response perturbations both at the population and single cell level. Our computational predictions suggest that RelA and IRF3 are under auto- and cross-regulation. We predict, and confirm experimentally, that RIG-I mRNA expression is controlled by IRF7. We also predict the existence of a TLR3-dependent, IRF3-independent transcription factor (or factors) that control(s) expression of MAVS, IRF3 and members of the IKK family. Our model confirms the observed dsRNA dose-dependence of oscillatory patterns in single cells, with periods of 1-3 hr. Model fitting to time series, matched by knockdown data suggests that the NF-kB module operates in a different regime (with different coefficient values) than in the TNFa-stimulation experiments. In future studies, this model will serve as a foundation for identification of virus-encoded IIR antagonists and examination of stochastic effects of viral replication. Our model generates simulated time series, which reproduce the noisy oscillatory patterns of activity (with 1-3 hour period) observed in individual cells. Our work supports the hypothesis that the IIR is a phenomenon that emerged by evolution despite highly variable responses at an individual cell level.