Sex steroid modulation of signal transduction in thymus epithelial cell culture

Wei He, Kou Sakabe, Masahiko Okuma, Tsunetoshi Itoh, Kanji Seiki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The mechanism of action of sex steroid hormones (SHs), androgen (A) or oestrogen (E), on the protein kinase C (PKC)-related signal transduction pathway was examined in culture of a rat thymus epithelial cell line (TEC; IT-45R1). The results were as follows: (a) proliferation of TEC in response to SHs is mediated by plasma membrane-associated signal pathways generated as a result of interactions between SHs and plasma-borne inhibitors; (b) the action of cyclins and cyclin-dependent families, such as cdc2/cdk2 kinases, play a key role in cell cycle progression in TEC; (c) the SH-induced 'shutoff' effect on TEC cell proliferation is triggered by high doses of SHs. These results clearly suggest that 'non-genomic' SH action is a crucial event for TEC proliferation, and that TEC proliferation is controlled by a 'shutoff' mechanism triggered by high levels of SHs. The development of the TEC network in the thymus was discussed in relation to this 'shutoff' mechanism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)281-288
Number of pages8
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1998 Jan
Externally publishedYes


  • Cyclin-dependent kinase
  • Proliferation
  • Sex steroid hormones
  • Signal transduction
  • Thymus epithelial cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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