Controlling Nuclear NF-κB Dynamics by β-TrCP-Insights from a Computational Model

Biomedicines. 2019 May 27;7(2):40. doi: 10.3390/biomedicines7020040.


The canonical nuclear factor kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells (NF-κB) signaling pathway regulates central processes in mammalian cells and plays a fundamental role in the regulation of inflammation and immunity. Aberrant regulation of the activation of the transcription factor NF-κB is associated with severe diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease and arthritis. In the canonical pathway, the inhibitor IκB suppresses NF-κB's transcriptional activity. NF-κB becomes active upon the degradation of IκB, a process that is, in turn, regulated by the β-transducin repeat-containing protein (β-TrCP). β-TrCP has therefore been proposed as a promising pharmacological target in the development of novel therapeutic approaches to control NF-κB's activity in diseases. This study explores the extent to which β-TrCP affects the dynamics of nuclear NF-κB using a computational model of canonical NF-κB signaling. The analysis predicts that β-TrCP influences the steady-state concentration of nuclear NF-κB, as well as changes characteristic dynamic properties of nuclear NF-κB, such as fold-change and the duration of its response to pathway stimulation. The results suggest that the modulation of β-TrCP has a high potential to regulate the transcriptional activity of NF-κB.

Keywords: NF-κB signaling; area under curve; drug target; fold-change; mathematical modelling; ordinary differential equations; oscillation; β-TrCP.