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An early decrease in Notch activation is required for human TCR-αβ lineage differentiation at the expense of TCR-γδ T cells

Department of Clinical Chemistry, Microbiology and Immunology, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Ghent University, Ghent University Hospital, Ghent, Belgium.
Blood (Impact Factor: 10.43). 01/2009; 113(13):2988-98. DOI: 10.1182/blood-2008-06-164871
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Although well characterized in the mouse, the role of Notch signaling in the human T-cell receptor alphabeta (TCR-alphabeta) versus TCR-gammadelta lineage decision is still unclear. Although it is clear in the mouse that TCR-gammadelta development is less Notch dependent compared with TCR-alphabeta differentiation, retroviral overexpression studies in human have suggested an opposing role for Notch during human T-cell development. Using the OP9-coculture system, we demonstrate that changes in Notch activation are differentially required during human T-cell development. High Notch activation promotes the generation of T-lineage precursors and gammadelta T cells but inhibits differentiation toward the alphabeta lineage. Reducing the amount of Notch activation rescues alphabeta-lineage differentiation, also at the single-cell level. Gene expression analysis suggests that this is mediated by differential sensitivities of Notch target genes in response to changes in Notch activation. High Notch activity increases DTX1, NRARP, and RUNX3 expression, genes that are down-regulated during alphabeta-lineage differentiation. Furthermore, increased interleukin-7 levels cannot compensate for the Notch dependent TCR-gammadelta development. Our results reveal stage-dependent molecular changes in Notch signaling that are critical for normal human T-cell development and reveal fundamental molecular differences between mouse and human.

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    • "Lymphotoxin-mediated as well as Notch signaling are important for the  versus  lineage commitment (Ciofani et al., 2004; Garbe et al., 2006; Garcia-Peydro et al., 2003; Hayes et al., 2005; Kang et al., 2001; Silva-Santos et al., 2005; Van de Walle et al., 2009). Additionally, several transcription factors were identified as important regulators of  versus  lineage decision. "
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    • "In marked discrepancy with murine thymocyte differentiation, high Notch activation appears to inhibit human TCR-αβ differentiation, skewing progenitors toward the γδ lineage. In order to rescue human αβ lineage differentiation, the level of Notch activation must be reduced [46]. This is particularly intriguing as in mice, it has been reported that high Notch levels at the DN3 stage are required for TCR-αβ differentiation whereas TCR-γδ-expressing cells can survive and expand in the absence of Notch [47]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Endocytose joue un rôle dans l'activation du récepteur Notch. Des mutations dans le gène drosophilien lethal giant discs (lgd), provoque une prolifération cellulaire en perturbant l'endocytose de Notch. Les orthologues murins mlgd1 et 2 peuvent sauver ce phénotype, démontrant une fonction conservée. Cependant, des publications récentes suggèrent que les orthologs humains de lgd (hgd1/2) sont nucléaires. Dans cette étude, il est démontré que chez la Drosophile, le mutant dlgd(08) provoque l'accumulation de Notch dans des vésicules et une surprolifération de neuroblastes . Ceci suggère que Notch est activé a l'intérieur des endosomes dans les neuroblastes. L'immunohistochimie de cellules Hela indique que hlgd1 et 2 ne sont pas nucléaires, mais associés à des strctures endosomales. Enfin, la baisse d'expression par shRNA des gènes murins mlgd1 et mlgd2 provoque une différenciation accélérée des cellules souches hématopoïétiques dans la lignée lymphopoïèse T et bloque la transition DN3 / CD4+CD8+, suggérant une suractivation de Notch. Endocytosis plays a role in the activation of the Notch receptor. Mutations in the Drosophila gene lethal giant discs (lgd), causes cellular overgrowth by perturbing Notch endocytosis. This Drosophila phenotype is rescued by the murine orthologs mlgd1 and 2, indicating conserved function. However, recent publications suggest that the human orthologs (hlgd1/2) are nuclear. This study demonstrates that the dlgd(08) mutant in Drosophila causes accumulation of Notch in vesicles and the overproliferation of neuroblasts. This suggests Notch is activated from within endosomes in neuroblasts. Immunohistochemistry of Hela cells indicates that hlgd1 is associated with early endosome while, hlgd2 with later endosome and lysosome, and not with the nucleus. Finally, down regulation of murine mlgd1 and mlgd2 by shRNA caused an accelerated differentiation of hematopoietic stem cell into the T lymphopoiesis lineage and blocked the DN3 to CD4+CD8+ transition, suggesting that Notch is overactivated in these cells.
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