ABSTRACT: Overlap of TCR repertoires among individuals provides the molecular basis for public T cell responses. By deep-sequencing the TCRβ repertoires of CD4+CD8+ thymocytes from three individual mice, we observed that a substantial degree of TCRβ overlap, comprising ∼10-15% of all unique amino acid sequences and ∼5-10% of all unique nucleotide sequences across any two individuals, is already present at this early stage of T cell development. The majority of TCRβ sharing between individual thymocyte repertoires could be attributed to the process of convergent recombination, with additional contributions likely arising from recombinatorial biases; the role of selection during intrathymic development was negligible. These results indicate that the process of TCR gene recombination is the major determinant of clonotype sharing between individuals.
The Journal of Immunology 07/2012; 189(5):2404-13. · 5.79 Impact Factor