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Activation of T cell antigen receptor alpha- and beta-chain genes in the thymus: implications for the lineages of developing cortical thymocytes

Kinnon, Christine and Diamond, Rochelle A. and Rothenberg, Ellen V. (1986) Activation of T cell antigen receptor alpha- and beta-chain genes in the thymus: implications for the lineages of developing cortical thymocytes. Journal of Immunology, 137 (12). pp. 4010-4015. ISSN 0022-1767. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20170210-122538890

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Abstract

Mammalian T lymphocytes mature in the thymus through a series of differentiation events that involve both rapid proliferation and extensive cell death. The mechanisms that govern these processes are currently unknown; however, both mitogenesis and death affect particular subpopulations of cells, suggesting the selective amplification and destruction of specific T cell clones. In mature peripheral T cells, proliferation is most commonly triggered by the recognition of antigen through the T cell antigen receptor complex. If antigen recognition also controls proliferation in the thymus, the differential expression of antigen receptor genes during maturation could play some role in determining the fate of developing T cells. In this study, we examined the expression of the alpha- and beta-chain genes of the T cell antigen receptor in different subpopulations of adult thymocytes. We compared two postmitotic populations--one that appears committed to die and one that appears mature--and several blast cell populations that are enriched for precursors of one or another presumptive lineage. We have found that Lyt-2-, L3T4- precursor thymocytes express much lower levels of both alpha- and beta-chain mRNA than the cells likely to be their immediate descendents. Furthermore, our results show that the cells of the major cortical lineage, which have at least a 95% probability of death, nevertheless express high levels of mature mRNA encoding both the alpha- and the beta-chains of the T cell antigen receptor. These results have important implications for the mechanisms involved in the overproduction and elimination of this major class of T lymphocyte.


Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
http://www.jimmunol.org/content/137/12/4010.longPublisherArticle
ORCID:
AuthorORCID
Rothenberg, Ellen V.0000-0002-3901-347X
Additional Information:© 1986 American Association of Immunologists. Received for publication May 1, 1986. Accepted for publication September 9, 1986. This work was supported by U. S. Public Health Service Grants CA34181, AI19752, and CA 32911. We thank Mitchell Kronenberg, Astar Winoto, and Lee Hood for T cell receptor probes, Yassemi Capetanaki and Elias Lazarides for the actin probe, James Lugo and Santosh Krishnan for help preparing double-negative thymocytes, Mitchell Kronenberg, Regina Haars, and Kathleen McGuire for helpful advice and discussion, and Eric Davidson, Lee Hood, and Ray Owen for valuable comments on the manuscript.
Funders:
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NIHCA34181
NIHAI19752
NIHCA32911
Issue or Number:12
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20170210-122538890
Persistent URL:https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20170210-122538890
Official Citation:Activation of T cell antigen receptor alpha- and beta-chain genes in the thymus: implications for the lineages of developing cortical thymocytes. C Kinnon, R A Diamond, E V Rothenberg The Journal of Immunology December 15, 1986, 137 (12) 4010-4015
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:74210
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:10 Feb 2017 21:43
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 16:36

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