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J Exp Med. 2006 Jun 12;203(6):1579-90. Epub 2006 Jun 5.

Differential synergy of Notch and T cell receptor signaling determines alphabeta versus gammadelta lineage fate.

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  • 1Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA.

Abstract

Thymic precursors expressing the pre-T cell receptor (TCR), the gammadeltaTCR, or the alphabetaTCR can all enter the CD4+ 8+ alphabeta lineage, albeit with different efficacy. Here it is shown that proliferation and differentiation of precursors with the different TCRs into alphabeta lineage cells require Notch signaling at the DN3 stage of thymic development. At the DN4 stage, Notch signaling still significantly contributes to the generation of alphabeta T cells. In particular, in alphabeta lineage commitment, the pre-TCR synergizes more efficiently with Notch signals than the other two TCRs, whereas gammadeltaTCR-expressing cells can survive and expand in the absence of Notch signals, even though Notch signaling enhances their proliferation. These observations suggest a new model of alphabeta versus gammadelta lineage choice in which lineage fate is determined by the extent of synergy between TCR and Notch signaling and in which the evolutionarily recent advent of the cell-autonomously signaling pre-TCR increased the efficacy of alphabeta T cell generation.

PMID:
16754723
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2118312
Free PMC Article
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