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Med Res Rev. 2016 Mar;36(2):193-220. doi: 10.1002/med.21361. Epub 2015 Aug 24.

Role of Ets Proteins in Development, Differentiation, and Function of T-Cell Subsets.

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Institute of Immunology, PLA, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing, 400038, P.R. China.
Battalion 10 of Cadet Brigade, Third Military Medical University, Chongqing, 400038, P.R. China.
van Velkinburgh Initiative for Collaboratory BioMedical Research, Santa Fe, NM, 87501, USA.


Through positive selection, double-positive cells in the thymus differentiate into CD4(+) or CD8(+) T single-positive cells that subsequently develop into different types of effective T cells, such as T-helper and cytotoxic T lymphocyte cells, that play distinctive roles in the immune system. Development, differentiation, and function of thymocytes and CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells are controlled by a multitude of secreted and intracellular factors, ranging from cytokine signaling modules to transcription factors and epigenetic modifiers. Members of the E26 transformation specific (Ets) family of transcription factors, in particular, are potent regulators of these CD4(+) or CD8(+) T-cell processes. In this review, we summarize and discuss the functions and underlying mechanisms of the Ets family members that have been characterized as involved in these processes. Ongoing research of these factors is expected to identify practical applications for the Ets family members as novel therapeutic targets for inflammation-related diseases.


Ets; T cell; differentiation; epigenetic; function

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