Prothymocyte seeding in the thymus

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A major gap in our understanding of T lymphocyte development is the process of stem cell differentiation into T lymphocyte precursors. An important question is whether bone marrow-derived stem cells become committed to T lymphoid lineage within the bone marrow, or whether this occurs once cells have entered the microenvironment of the thymus. Attempts to identify a haemapoietic precursor of thymocytes in mice, a "prothymocyte", have involved cell transfer experiments involving isolated and selected populations of bone marrow stem cells, as well as transformed or continuous cell lines representing early stage in mouse T cell development. Current information on the properties of stem cells which can seed the thymus is reviewed in this paper, and the possibility that progenitor T cells may be identified by their expression of receptor(s) which localise them into the thymus is considered.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
JournalImmunology Letters
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1991
Externally publishedYes


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