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Expression of a wide T cell receptor V beta repertoire in human T lymphocytes derived in vitro from embryonic liver cell precursors

By A. Poggi, J. F. Demarest, P. Costa, R. Biassoni, N. Pella, G. Pantaleo, M. C. Mingari and L. Moretta


As shown recently, CD3+/TcR+ functional T lymphocytes can be derived in culture from embryonic liver cell precursors at a gestational age (6-8 weeks) preceding the colonization of the epithelial thymus. In this report, we analyzed the V beta repertoire of T lymphocytes derived from embryonic liver by applying a quantitative reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction technique. To this end, oligonucleotide primers for C alpha or the various human V beta have been used to study both freshly derived embryonic liver cell suspensions and CD3+/TcR+ populations derived after approximately 6 weeks upon stimulation with 1% phytohemagglutinin and culture in 100 units/ml recombinant interleukin-2. In order to exclude possible contaminations with mother-derived T lymphocytes, only T cells displaying both X and Y chromosomal sequences (i.e. derived from male embryos) were further analyzed. While neither C alpha nor the various V beta could be detected in fresh liver cells, C alpha and the large majority of V beta were detected in in vitro cultured populations. The levels of the various V beta expressed by embryo-derived T cells was similar to that detected in adult peripheral blood-derived T lymphocytes. These experiments indicate that the immature liver precursors can potentially give rise in vitro to T cells which express a wide V beta repertoire and may provide a suitable in vitro system for the analysis of the selection processes mediated by either major histocompatibility complex antigen or superantigens

Topics: Antigens, CD3/biosynthesis Antigens, Surface/biosynthesis Cell Differentiation/*immunology Cells, Cultured Embryonic and Fetal Development/immunology Female Humans Liver/*cytology/embryology Male RNA, Messenger/biosynthesis Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell, alpha-beta/*biosynthesis T-Lymphocytes/*physiology Thorax/cytology/embryology
Publisher: 'Wiley'
Year: 1994
DOI identifier: 10.1002/eji.1830240949
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