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Scand J Immunol. 1996 Aug;44(2):115-21.

CD3-4-8- thymocyte precursors with interleukin-2 receptors differentiate phenotypically in coculture with thymic stromal cells.

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Department of Cell Biology and Histology, Sackler School of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Ramat Aviv, Israel.


CD3-4-8- interleukin-2 receptor positive (IL-2R+) thymocyte precursors from adult mice were cocultured with thymic stromal cells from syngeneic adult mice. The IL-2R+CD3-4-8- thymocytes were obtained by positive panning of IL-2R+ cells followed by either sorting or negative panning of triple negative cells, and they were cocultured with primary or secondary cultures of heterogeneous thymic stromal cells. Phenotypic maturation of these precursor cells was extremely rapid. Within 2 1/2 days significant numbers of CD4+8+ and CD3+4+8- cell populations developed, the latter expressing the alpha beta T-cell receptor (alpha beta-TCR). Thus heterogeneous stromal cell cultures support the development of IL-2R+ precursors and with these methods it will now be possible to isolate the particular stromal cells involved at each stromal-dependent step.

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