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Semin Immunol. 2011 Oct;23(5):350-9. doi: 10.1016/j.smim.2011.08.007. Epub 2011 Oct 6.

On becoming a T cell, a convergence of factors kick it up a Notch along the way.

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Department of Immunology, University of Toronto, Sunnybrook Research Institute, Toronto, Ontario M4N 3M5, Canada.


The thymus is seeded by bone marrow-derived progenitors, which undergo a series of differentiation and proliferation events in order to generate functional T lymphocytes. The Notch signaling pathway, together with multiple transcription factors, act in concert to commit progenitors to a T-lineage fate, extinguishing non-T cell potential, inducing thymocyte differentiation and supporting proliferation and survival along the way to becoming a mature T cell. This review focuses on recent evidence regarding the complex interplay between the Notch pathway and other key transcription factors at specific lineage-decision points during the program of T cell development.

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