Alteration of T-cell receptor repertoires during thymic T-cell development

T. Matsutani, T. Ohmori, M. Ogata, H. Soga, T. Yoshioka, R. Suzuki, T. Itoh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


The majority of thymocytes die in the thymus, whereas small populations of T cells that are able to specifically recognize an antigen are considered to survive. Although the thymic selection is thought to have a profound effect on T-cell receptor (TCR) repertoire, little is known how TCR repertoire is formed during the thymocyte developmental process. We examined TCRα- and β-chain variable regions (TCRAV and TCRBV) repertoire in thymic T-cell subpopulations from mice bearing different major histocompatibility (MHC) haplotypes. In Balb/c mice, but not C57BL/6, remarkable alterations of the TCR repertoire were observed in mature T-cell subpopulations as previously reported. In contrast, there were no significant differences of TCRBV repertoire between DN3 (CD25+CD44-) and DN4 (CD25-CD44 -), and between DN4 and DP. These results suggest that (1) TCR repertoire of mature T cells was formed mainly under the influence of endogenous superantigens, while MHC haplotypes played the least role; (2) the 'β-selection' process during immature stages had little impact on TCRBV repertoire formation; and (3) TCR repertoire in immature T-cell subpopulations was extremely similar between different strains of mice. We thus consider that pre-selection TCR repertoire in immature T cells could be determined by some genetic factors conserved among different strains.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)53-60
Number of pages8
JournalScandinavian Journal of Immunology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Jul
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology


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