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Neier SC, Ferrer A, Wilton KM, Smith SE, Kelcher AM, Pavelko KD, Canfield JM, Davis TR, Stiles RJ, Chen Z, McCluskey J, Burrows SR, Rossjohn J, Hebrink DM, Carmona EM, Limper AH, Kappes DJ, Wettstein PJ, Johnson AJ, Pease LR, Daniels MA, Neuhauser C, Gil D, Schrum AG
The early proximal alphabeta TCR signalosome specifies thymic selection outcome through a quantitative protein interaction network
Sci Immunol (2019) In process.
During alphabeta T cell development, T cell antigen receptor (TCR) engagement transduces biochemical signals through a protein-protein interaction (PPI) network that dictates dichotomous cell fate decisions. It remains unclear how signal specificity is communicated, instructing either positive selection to advance cell differentiation or death by negative selection. Early signal discrimination might occur by PPI signatures differing qualitatively (customized, unique PPI combinations for each signal), quantitatively (graded amounts of a single PPI series), or kinetically (speed of PPI pathway progression). Using a novel PPI network analysis, we found that early TCR-proximal signals distinguishing positive from negative selection appeared to be primarily quantitative in nature. Furthermore, the signal intensity of this PPI network was used to find an antigen dose that caused a classic negative selection ligand to induce positive selection of conventional alphabeta T cells, suggesting that the quantity of TCR triggering was sufficient to program selection outcome. Because previous work had suggested that positive selection might involve a qualitatively unique signal through CD3delta, we reexamined the block in positive selection observed in CD3delta(0) mice. We found that CD3delta(0) thymocytes were inhibited but capable of signaling positive selection, generating low numbers of MHC-dependent alphabeta T cells that expressed diverse TCR repertoires and participated in immune responses against infection. We conclude that the major role for CD3delta in positive selection is to quantitatively boost the signal for maximal generation of alphabeta T cells. Together, these data indicate that a quantitative network signaling mechanism through the early proximal TCR signalosome determines thymic selection outcome.
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Publication Date: 2019-02-15.
Last updated on Wednesday, March 04, 2020