Age-associated increase in the expression of T-cell antigen receptor γ-chain gene in conventional and germfree mice

Y. Yoshikai, G. Matsuzaki, K. Kishihara, K. Nomoto, T. Yokokura, K. Nomoto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

To determine whether environmental antigens such as intestinal microflora contribute to expansion of the T-cell repertoire, age-related changes in the expression level of T-cell antigen receptor genes encoding γ, β, and α chains were compared in the lymphoid tissues of conventional versus germfree mice. Irrespective of the conditions of maintenance, an age-associated increase in the expression of the γ-chain gene was evident in the thymus and spleen. Both conventional and germfree old mice (age, 40 weeks) had a relatively high proportion of Thy1+ L3T4- Lyt2- cells but a reduced level of Thy1+ L3T4- Lyt2+ cells in the thymus compared with their counterparts (age 8 weeks). The thymic dysfunction but not the stimulation by intestinal microflora may contribute to this age-related increase in γ-gene transcripts in these tissues. On the other hand, an age-associated increase in the expression of γ RNA was not evident in the mesenteric lymph nodes of germfree mice, although a remarkable increase in the γ-chain gene messages was detected in the lymph nodes of the aged conventional mice. These results suggest that the expression of γ RNA in cells of gut-associated lymphoid tissue is partly influenced by intestinal microflora.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2069-2074
Number of pages6
JournalInfection and Immunity
Volume56
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1988
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Parasitology
  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Infectious Diseases

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    Yoshikai, Y., Matsuzaki, G., Kishihara, K., Nomoto, K., Yokokura, T., & Nomoto, K. (1988). Age-associated increase in the expression of T-cell antigen receptor γ-chain gene in conventional and germfree mice. Infection and Immunity, 56(8), 2069-2074.