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Trends Immunol. 2001 Jun;22(6):302-7.

Fishing for lymphoid genes.

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Division of Hematology, Children's Hospital and Howard Hughes Medical Institute, 320 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115, USA.


Thymic organogenesis and T-cell lymphopoiesis are crucial interdependent processes that establish a functional vertebrate immune system. The current understanding of vertebrate thymic development during embryogenesis remains incomplete and would benefit from novel approaches. The zebrafish Danio rerio is a powerful developmental and genetic system for the dissection of early events in the ontogeny of the immune system. Forward genetic screens have uncovered genes involved in hematopoiesis, and specific screens are being designed to examine the genes that regulate T-cell development and the origin of the thymus. Studies of the zebrafish should improve our understanding of lymphoid development in vertebrates.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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