A TRIF-independent branch of TLR3 signaling

Michifumi Yamashita, Saurabh Chattopadhyay, Volker Fensterl, Ying Zhang, Ganes C. Sen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


dsRNA is a common pathogen-associated molecular pattern that is recognized by cellular TLR3 and used by virus-infected cells to activate specific transcription factors and trigger induction of antiviral genes. In this article, we report a new branch of TLR3 signaling that does not lead to gene induction but affects many cellular properties, such as cell migration, adhesion, and proliferation. We demonstrated that the migration of multiple cell lineages was affected by dsRNA treatment or influenza virus infection in a TLR3-dependent fashion. Surprisingly, for this effect of TLR3 signaling, the adaptor proteins, TRIF and MyD88, were not required. The effects of the new pathway were mediated by the proto-oncoprotein c-Src, which bound to TLR3 after dsRNA stimulation of cells. The response was biphasic: upon dsRNA treatment, we observed an immediate increase in cell motility followed by its strong inhibition. Our results indicate that the first phase was mediated by dsRNA-induced phosphorylation and activation of Src, whereas the second phase resulted from the sequestration of activated Src in lipid rafts, thus decreasing its active cytoplasmic pool. As expected, two other functions of Src, its effect on cell adhesion and cell proliferation, were also inhibited by dsRNA treatment. These results demonstrate that activated TLR3 can engage Src to trigger multiple cellular effects and reveal a possible link between innate immune response and cell growth regulation. This study also provides a rare example of TLR-mediated cellular effects that do not require gene induction and the first example, to our knowledge, of an adaptor-independent effect of any TLR.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2825-2833
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Mar 15 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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