Keeping track of pro-B cells: a new model for the effects of IL-7 during B cell development

Eur J Immunol. 2004 Oct;34(10):2642-6. doi: 10.1002/eji.200425532.


Trophic and instructive models have been invoked to explain how various cytokines influence the survival, proliferation and differentiation of lymphoid progenitors. There is evidence that IL-7 can act in either a trophic or an instructive manner during B and T cell development although its roles in B cell development in the fetus versus the adult mouse and in the mouse versus the human may vary. Here we outline the stages of B cell development and the conventional model of the role of IL-7 in the transitions from pro-B cells to pre-B cells and then to immature B cells. We also discuss the implications of recent data that have led to a new model for this process.

Publication types

  • Comment

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • B-Lymphocytes / cytology*
  • B-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Granulocyte Precursor Cells
  • Humans
  • Immune System / embryology
  • Immune System / growth & development
  • Interleukin-7 / immunology*
  • Models, Immunological*


  • Interleukin-7