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Nat Immunol. 2003 Sep;4(9):866-73. Epub 2003 Aug 17.

Efficient thymic immigration of B220+ lymphoid-restricted bone marrow cells with T precursor potential.

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Department of Pathology, Harvard Medical School, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute Boston, Massachusetts, 02115, USA.


Using a human CD25 reporter transgene controlled by regulatory sequences from the gene encoding pre-T cell receptor alpha, we identified a common lymphocyte precursor (CLP-2) population that, in contrast to the previously identified CLP-1 population, was c-Kit-B220+. In short-term culture, the CLP-2 could be derived from the CLP-1 subset, and contained cells that in clonogenic assays were assessed to be bipotent precursors of T and B cells. Intravenous injection of bone marrow cells yielded a selective accumulation of CLP-2 thymic immigrants that in thymic organ culture generated mature alphabeta T cells. Although the CLP-2 subset may represent the most differentiated population with T cell potential before commitment to the B cell lineage, other subsets of thymic immigrants capable of generating T cells may exist.

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