Identification of very early lymphoid precursors in bone marrow and their regulation by estrogen

K. L. Medina, K. P. Garrett, L. F. Thompson, M. I.D. Rossi, K. J. Payne, P. W. Kincade

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

187 Scopus citations


Estrogen is a negative regulator of lymphopoiesis and provides an experimental tool for probing relationships between lymphocyte precursors and stem cells. We found that expression of lymphocyte-associated genes and immunoglobulin (Ig) gene rearrangement occurred before CD45R acquisition. Lymphoid-restricted progenitors that were Lin-IL-7Rα+c-kitloTdT+ (lineage marker-, interleukin receptor 7α+, c-kitlo and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase+) were selectively depleted in estrogen-treated mice; within a less differentiated Lin-c-kithi fraction, functional precursors of B and T, but not myeloid, cells were also selectively depleted. TdT and an Ig heavy chain transgene were detected within a hormone-regulated Lin-c-kithiSca-I +CD27+Flk-2+IL-7Rα- subset of this multipotential progenitor population. Identification of these extremely early lymphoid precursors should facilitate investigation of the molecular mechanisms that control lineage-fate decisions in hematopoiesis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)718-724
Number of pages7
JournalNature immunology
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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