Androgen Receptors in Epithelial Cells Regulate Thymopoiesis and Recent Thymic Emigrants in Male Mice
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2020

Androgens have profound effects on T cell homeostasis, including regulation of thymic T lymphopoiesis (thymopoiesis) and production of recent thymic emigrants (RTEs), i. e., immature T cells that derive from the thymus and continue their maturation to mature naive T cells in secondary lymphoid organs. Here we investigated the androgen target cell for effects on thymopoiesis and RTEs in spleen and lymph nodes. Male mice with a general androgen receptor knockout (G-ARKO), T cell-specific (T-ARKO), or epithelial cell-specific (E-ARKO) knockout were examined. G-ARKO mice showed increased thymus weight and increased numbers of thymic T cell progenitors. These effects were not T cell-intrinsic, since T-ARKO mice displayed unaltered thymus weight and thymopoiesis. In line with a role for thymic epithelial cells (TECs), E-ARKO mice showed increased thymus weight and numbers of thymic T cell progenitors. Further, E-ARKO mice had more CD4(+)and CD8(+)T cells in spleen and an increased frequency of RTEs among T cells in spleen and lymph nodes. Depletion of the androgen receptor in epithelial cells was also associated with a small shift in the relative number of cortical (reduced) and medullary (increased) TECs and increased CCL25 staining in the thymic medulla, similar to previous observations in castrated mice. In conclusion, we demonstrate that the thymic epithelium is a target compartment for androgen-mediated regulation of thymopoiesis and consequently the generation of RTEs.



thymic epithelial cells

T cells



Anna S. Wilhelmson

Göteborgs universitet

Marta Lantero Rodriguez

Göteborgs universitet

Inger Johansson

Göteborgs universitet

Elin Svedlund Eriksson

Göteborgs universitet

Alexandra Stubelius

Chalmers, Biologi och bioteknik, Kemisk biologi

Göteborgs universitet

Susanne Lindgren

Göteborgs universitet

Johan Bourghardt Fagman

Göteborgs universitet

Pamela J. Fink

University of Washington

Hans Carlsten

Göteborgs universitet

Olov Ekwall

Göteborgs universitet

Asa Tivesten

Göteborgs universitet

Frontiers in Immunology

1664-3224 (eISSN)

Vol. 11 1342



Cell- och molekylärbiologi

Immunologi inom det medicinska området


Hälsa och teknik





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