Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Infusion of in vitro-derived T cell progenitor (proT) therapy with hematopoietic stem cell transplant aids the recovery of the thymus damaged by total body irradiation. To understand the interaction between proTs and the thymic microenvironment, WT mice were lethally irradiated and given T cell-deficient (Rag1-/-) marrow with WT in vitro-generated proTs, limiting mature T cell development to infused proTs. ProTs within the host thymus led to a significant increase in thymic epithelial cells (TECs) by day 21 after transplant, increasing actively cycling TECs. Upon thymus egress (day 28), proT TEC effects were lost, suggesting that continued signaling from proTs is required to sustain TEC cycling and cellularity. Thymocytes increased significantly by day 21, followed by a significant improvement in mature T cell numbers in the periphery by day 35. This protective surge was temporary, receding by day 60. Double-negative 2 (DN2) proTs selectively increased thymocyte number, while DN3 proTs preferentially increased TECs and T cells in the spleen that persisted at day 60. These findings highlight the importance of the interaction between proTs and TECs in the proliferation and survival of TECs and that the maturation stage of proTs has unique effects on thymopoiesis and peripheral T cell recovery.

Original publication




Journal article


JCI insight

Publication Date