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Immunity. 2000 Apr;12(4):441-50.

T cell progenitors emerge earlier than B cell progenitors in the murine fetal liver.

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Department of Immunology, Institute for Frontier Medical Sciences, Kyoto University, Japan.


The developmental potential of individual cells in the Lin-c-kit+CD45+IL-7R+ (IL-7R+) population from murine fetal liver was investigated using a clonal assay capable of determining the potential of a progenitor to give rise to myeloid, T, and B cells. Unipotent progenitors generating T cells (p-T) or B cells (p-B) but not other types of progenitors were found in the IL-7R+ population. A large proportion of progenitors at day 12 of gestation are p-T, whereas the frequency of p-T dramatically decreases with gestational age. In marked contrast, p-B are very rare by day 12, but they rapidly increase thereafter. These findings strongly suggest that the commitment of multipotent progenitors to T and B cell lineages occurs independently.

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