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Immunol Rev. 1986 Jun;91:5-37.

Lymphocyte population kinetics in the mouse.


In a normal dynamic equilibrium, at least half of the peripheral T-cell pool is constituted by lymphocytes which have divided 24-48 h previously, and are therefore rapidly renewed. The renewal of peripheral T cells occurs partly by influx of cells from the thymus and, more importantly, by cell division at the periphery. The cyclic pattern of decay observed for T cells after HU treatment suggests the presence of progenitor-descendent relationships within the peripheral T-cell pool. Peripheral progenitors must contain both cycling and non-cycling cells to account for cell recovery after HU administration in ATx mice. T-cell production at the periphery involves both organized (spleen or lymph nodes) as well as non-organized lymphoid tissue (GALT). The latter may in fact provide the major contribution. Expansion of mature T lymphocytes contributes to clonal persistence at the periphery and to the choice of T-cell repertoires. The importance of post-thymic selection of T-cell repertoires is suggested by the considerable expansion potential revealed by peripheral T cells.

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