Note to users. If you're seeing this message, it means that your browser cannot find this page's style/presentation instructions -- or possibly that you are using a browser that does not support current Web standards. Find out more about why this message is appearing, and what you can do to make your experience of our site the best it can be.

Subscribe

Logo for

Science 336 (6077): 40-41

Copyright © 2012 by the American Association for the Advancement of Science

Rebuilding the Thymus

Avinash Bhandoola1, and David Artis2

The thymus is the essential generative organ for T cell production, conserved from cartilaginous fish to humans (1). It is periodically colonized by lymphoid precursor cells from the blood, and after a period of maturation, T cells emerge bearing specific T cell receptors (2). This constitutes an arm of the adaptive immune system that provides many different modalities of protection. But many conditions affect thymus function, including therapeutic treatments such as chemotherapy and irradiation, with dire consequences for host protection (3). On page 91 of this issue, Dudakov et al. (4) demonstrate a surprising role for a subset of innate lymphoid cells in regenerating the thymus. This has implications for restoring and maintaining normal T cell immunity during conditions when thymus function is diminished.

1 Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.
2 Department of Microbiology, Institute for Immunology, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.

E-mail: bhandooa{at}mail.med.upenn.edu



To Advertise     Find Products


Science Signaling. ISSN 1937-9145 (online), 1945-0877 (print). Pre-2008: Science's STKE. ISSN 1525-8882