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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

The ontogeny of B cells in the thymus of normal, CD3 epsilon knockout (KO), RAG-2 KO and IL-7 transgenic mice.

The ontogeny of thymic B cells was determined by three-color flow cytometry and the presence or absence of B cell progenitors confirmed by cell culture experiments. In the thymus of young normal mice, CD117(+), B220(low) pro- and pre-B cells are present but disappear with age. B220(low), CD5(+), B-1 B cells are present in the thymus of older animals following the appearance of similar cells in the peritoneal cavity and blood. In CD3 epsilon gene-deleted mice, the phenotypic progression and number of thymic B cells remains unaltered, showing that blocking T cell development does not automatically result in an increase of thymic B lymphopoiesis. Pro-B cells in RAG-2 knockout mice are found in the fetal and neonatal blood, spleen and thymus, but with increasing age are only found in the bone marrow. B lymphopoiesis in adult IL-7 transgenic mice is dramatically altered with CD117(+) pro- and pre-B cells present in spleen, lymph node and blood. In the thymus of adult IL-7 transgenic mice, the fraction of CD117(+) thymic B cells is significantly increased. These results show that in the steady state, the phenotype of thymic B cells is critically dependent on both mouse age and the phenotype of circulating B cells.[1]


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