Molecular genetics of T cell development

Annu Rev Immunol. 2005;23:601-49. doi: 10.1146/annurev.immunol.23.021704.115737.

Abstract

T cell development is guided by a complex set of transcription factors that act recursively, in different combinations, at each of the developmental choice points from T-lineage specification to peripheral T cell specialization. This review describes the modes of action of the major T-lineage-defining transcription factors and the signal pathways that activate them during intrathymic differentiation from pluripotent precursors. Roles of Notch and its effector RBPSuh (CSL), GATA-3, E2A/HEB and Id proteins, c-Myb, TCF-1, and members of the Runx, Ets, and Ikaros families are critical. Less known transcription factors that are newly recognized as being required for T cell development at particular checkpoints are also described. The transcriptional regulation of T cell development is contrasted with that of B cell development, in terms of their different degrees of overlap with the stem-cell program and the different roles of key transcription factors in gene regulatory networks leading to lineage commitment.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • B-Lymphocytes / cytology
  • B-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • B-Lymphocytes / metabolism
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Humans
  • Models, Immunological
  • Molecular Biology
  • T-Lymphocytes / cytology*
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes / metabolism*
  • Transcription Factors / genetics
  • Transcription Factors / metabolism

Substances

  • Transcription Factors