Accessibility control of T cell receptor gene rearrangement in developing thymocytes. The TCR alpha/delta locus.
The joining of T cell receptor (TCR) and immunoglobulin (Ig) gene segments through the process of V(D)J recombination occurs in a lineage-specific and developmental-stage-specific way during the early stages of lymphocyte development. Such developmental regulation is thought to be mediated through the control of gene segment accessibility to the recombinase. We have studied the regulation of V(D)J recombination at the TCR alpha/delta locus, because this locus provides a fascinating model in which distinct sets of gene segments are activated at different stages of T cell development. The transcriptional enhancers Edelta and Ealpha have been implicated as critical regulators that, in conjunction with other cis-acting elements, confer region-specific and developmental-stage-specific changes in gene segment accessibility within TCR alpha/delta locus chromatin. Current work suggests that they may do so by functioning as regional modulators of histone acetylation.
Krangel, MS; McMurry, MT; Hernandez-Munain, C; Zhong, XP; Carabana, J
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