BACKGROUND: Cells process signals using complex and dynamic networks. Studying how this is performed in a context and cell type specific way is essential to understand signaling both in physiological and diseased situations. Context-specific medium/high throughput proteomic data measured upon perturbation is now relatively easy to obtain but formalisms that can take advantage of these features to build models of signaling are still comparatively scarce.
RESULTS: Here we present CellNOptR, an open-source R software package for building predictive logic models of signaling networks by training networks derived from prior knowledge to signaling (typically phosphoproteomic) data. CellNOptR features different logic formalisms, from Boolean models to differential equations, in a common framework. These different logic model representations accommodate state and time values with increasing levels of detail. We provide in addition an interface via Cytoscape (CytoCopteR) to facilitate use and integration with Cytoscape network-based capabilities.
CONCLUSIONS: Models generated with this pipeline have two key features. First, they are constrained by prior knowledge about the network but trained to data. They are therefore context and cell line specific, which results in enhanced predictive and mechanistic insights. Second, they can be built using different logic formalisms depending on the richness of the available data. Models built with CellNOptR are useful tools to understand how signals are processed by cells and how this is altered in disease. They can be used to predict the effect of perturbations (individual or in combinations), and potentially to engineer therapies that have differential effects/side effects depending on the cell type or context.
Vaccines exert strong selective pressures on pathogens, favouring the spread of antigenic variants. We propose a simple mathematical model to investigate the dynamics of a novel pathogenic strain that emerges in a population where a previous strain is maintained at low endemic level by a vaccine. We compare three methods to assess the ability of the novel strain to invade and persist: algebraic rate of invasion; deterministic dynamics; and stochastic dynamics. These three techniques provide complementary predictions on the fate of the system. In particular, we emphasize the importance of stochastic simulations, which account for the possibility of extinctions of either strain. More specifically, our model suggests that the probability of persistence of an invasive strain (i) can be minimized for intermediate levels of vaccine cross-protection (i.e. immune protection against the novel strain) and (ii) is lower if cross-immunity acts through a reduced infectious period rather than through reduced susceptibility. This version of the model can be used for both the stochastic and the deterministic simulations described in the article. For deterministic interpretations with infinite population sizes, set the population size N = 1. The model does reproduces the deterministic time course. The initial values are set to the steady state values for a latent infection with strain 1 with an invading infection of strain 2 (I2=1e-06), 100 percent vaccination with a susceptibility reduction τ=0.7 at birth (p=1), and all other parameters as in figure 3 of the publication.
This is a model of one presynaptic and one postsynaptic cell, as described in the article: Gamma oscillation by synaptic inhibition in a hippocampal interneuronal network model. Wang XJ, Buzsáki G. J Neurosci. 1996 Oct 15;16(20):6402-13. PMID: 8815919 ;
Fast neuronal oscillations (gamma, 20-80 Hz) have been observed in the neocortex and hippocampus during behavioral arousal. Using computer simulations, we investigated the hypothesis that such rhythmic activity can emerge in a random network of interconnected GABAergic fast-spiking interneurons. Specific conditions for the population synchronization, on properties of single cells and the circuit, were identified. These include the following: (1) that the amplitude of spike afterhyperpolarization be above the GABAA synaptic reversal potential; (2) that the ratio between the synaptic decay time constant and the oscillation period be sufficiently large; (3) that the effects of heterogeneities be modest because of a steep frequency-current relationship of fast-spiking neurons.