A stromal cell free culture system generates mouse pro-t cells that can reconstitute t-cell compartments in vivo
von Muenchow, Lilly
Rolink, Antonius G.
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Gehre, Nadine; Nusser, Anja; von Muenchow, Lilly; Tussiwand, Roxane; Engdahl, Corinne; Capoferri, Giuseppina; Bosco, Nabil; Ceredig, Rhodri; Rolink, Antonius G. (2014). A stromal cell free culture system generates mouse pro-t cells that can reconstitute t-cell compartments in vivo. European Journal of Immunology 45 (3), 932-942
T-cell lymphopenia following BM transplantation or diseases such as AIDS result in immunodeficiency. Novel approaches to ameliorate this situation are urgently required. Herein, we describe a novel stromal cell free culture system in which Lineage(-)Sca1(+)c-kit(+) BM hematopoietic progenitors very efficiently differentiate into pro-T cells. This culture system consists of plate-bound Delta-like 4 Notch ligand and the cytokines SCF and IL-7. The pro-T cells developing in these cultures express CD25, CD117, and partially CD44; express cytoplasmic CD3 epsilon; and have their TCR locus partially D-J rearranged. They could be expanded for over 3 months and used to reconstitute the T-cell compartments of sublethally irradiated T-cell-deficient CD3 epsilon(-/-) mice or lethally irradiated WT mice. Pro-T cells generated in this system could partially correct the T-cell lymphopenia of pre-T-/- mice. However, reconstituted CD3 epsilon(-/-) mice suffered from a wasting disease that was prevented by co-injection of purified CD4(+) CD25(high) WT Treg cells. In a T-cell-sufficient or T-lymphopenic setting, the development of disease was not observed. Thus, this in vitro culture system represents a powerful tool to generate large numbers of pro-T cells for transplantation and possibly with clinical applications.