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Nature. 1995 Jun 29;375(6534):795-8.

Crucial role of the pre-T-cell receptor alpha gene in development of alpha beta but not gamma delta T cells.

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Basel Institute of Immunology, Switzerland.

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  • Nature 1995 Nov 23;378(6555):419.


In T-cell precursors, the T-cell-receptor beta chain is expressed before the T-cell-receptor alpha chain and is sufficient to advance T-cell development in the absence of T-cell receptor alpha chains. In immature T cells, the T-cell-receptor beta protein can form disulphide-linked heterodimers with the pre-T-cell-receptor alpha chain and associate with signal-transducing CD3 molecules. The recently cloned pre-T-cell-receptor alpha gene encodes a transmembrane protein that is expressed in immature but not mature T cells. Here we show that alpha beta, but not gamma delta, cell development is severely hampered in pre-T-cell-receptor alpha-gene-deficient mice, which establishes a crucial role for the pre-T-cell receptor in early thymocyte development.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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