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Curr Opin Immunol. 1998 Jun;10(3):360-7.

Signaling checkpoints during the development of T lymphocytes.

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Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of California, San Francisco 94143-0414, USA.


Two major lineage decisions face immature T cells as they develop in the thymus. At an early stage in their development, they must first commit to either the gamma delta or alpha beta lineages. If they opt for the alpha beta lineage, then at a later stage they must also choose between a CD4+ or CD8+ fate before they can pass through the thymic medulla and exit to the periphery. Thymocyte survival at key developmental checkpoints is determined by signaling from cytokine receptors and the T-cell receptor. Recent advances have been made in contemporary understanding of the signals that regulate thymocyte survival, proliferation and lineage decisions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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