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Semin Immunol. 1998 Apr;10(2):127-32.

HMG box containing transcription factors in lymphocyte differentiation.

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Department of Pediatrics, University Hospital Leiden, The Netherlands.


The identification of the mammalian sex-determining gene Sry has led to the discovery of a large family of related ('HMG box') transcription factors that control developmental events in yeast, C. elegans, Drosophila and vertebrates. In lymphocyte differentiation, several HMG box proteins play a decisive role. Sox-4 is important for very early B-cell differentiation, while TCF-1/LEF-1 play a crucial role in early thymocyte development. TCF/LEF proteins have recently been found to constitute a downstream component of the Wingless/Wnt signal transduction pathway. In flies, this pathway controls segment polarity; in Xenopus it controls the definition of the body axis. Deregulation of the pathway occurs in several human tumors. These insights in the molecular events that are involved in TCF/LEF function in these organisms may eventually lead to the understanding of the function of these HMG box proteins in lymphoid development.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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