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Figure 2 - Transcriptional and epigenetic networks of helper T and innate lymphoid cells

Figure 2: Transcription factor (TF) network: the Aspen Grove. Subsets of CD4+ T cells and innate lymphoid cells (ILCs) exhibit the same or similar functionalities. Presumably, this is because they employ many of the same TFs working in concert to effect similar programs. As a metaphor for this problem, we considered that though aspen trees appear to separate trees, they are, in fact, connected by a shared root system. We posit that the fundamental network of TFs might function analogously such that the same ‘root system’ (i.e. TF network) is used as cells differentiate from hematopoietic stem cell to the multiplicity of lymphoid cells, some of which express a T-cell receptor and some of which do not. Many TFs act deeply below the surface (Notch, GATA-3, STAT5) being fundamental for generation and maintenance; others are important for acquisition of more specific functions later on. Regardless though, even if it appears that one is looking at different ‘trees’, one does not have to dig very deep to find the common elements. The Pando grove is the largest known aspen grove located in Utah (USA), and comprises more than 100 acres and 43 000 trees. It is estimated to be 80 000 years old.
Transcription factor (TF) network: the Aspen Grove. Subsets of CD4+ T cells and innate lymphoid cells (ILCs) exhibit the same or similar functionalities. Presumably, this is because they employ many of the same TFs working in concert to effect similar programs. As a metaphor for this problem, we considered that though aspen trees appear to separate trees, they are, in fact, connected by a shared root system. We posit that the fundamental network of TFs might function analogously such that the same ‘root system’ (i.e. TF network) is used as cells differentiate from hematopoietic stem cell to the multiplicity of lymphoid cells, some of which express a T-cell receptor and some of which do not. Many TFs act deeply below the surface (Notch, GATA-3, STAT5) being fundamental for generation and maintenance; others are important for acquisition of more specific functions later on. Regardless though, even if it appears that one is looking at different ‘trees’, one does not have to dig very deep to find the common elements. The Pando grove is the largest known aspen grove located in Utah (USA), and comprises more than 100 acres and 43 000 trees. It is estimated to be 80 000 years old.
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