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PLoS Pathog. 2010 Nov 4;6(11):e1001178. doi: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1001178.

Co-ordinated role of TLR3, RIG-I and MDA5 in the innate response to rhinovirus in bronchial epithelium.

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Department of Respiratory Medicine, National Heart & Lung Institute, Imperial College London, London, United Kingdom.

Erratum in

  • PLoS Pathog. 2012 Apr;8(4): doi/10.1371/annotation/c3f58c59-a42f-495b-a4f2-d74d55d72166.


The relative roles of the endosomal TLR3/7/8 versus the intracellular RNA helicases RIG-I and MDA5 in viral infection is much debated. We investigated the roles of each pattern recognition receptor in rhinovirus infection using primary bronchial epithelial cells. TLR3 was constitutively expressed; however, RIG-I and MDA5 were inducible by 8-12 h following rhinovirus infection. Bronchial epithelial tissue from normal volunteers challenged with rhinovirus in vivo exhibited low levels of RIG-I and MDA5 that were increased at day 4 post infection. Inhibition of TLR3, RIG-I and MDA5 by siRNA reduced innate cytokine mRNA, and increased rhinovirus replication. Inhibition of TLR3 and TRIF using siRNA reduced rhinovirus induced RNA helicases. Furthermore, IFNAR1 deficient mice exhibited RIG-I and MDA5 induction early during RV1B infection in an interferon independent manner. Hence anti-viral defense within bronchial epithelium requires co-ordinated recognition of rhinovirus infection, initially via TLR3/TRIF and later via inducible RNA helicases.

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