Age-related propensity to peripheral expansion of V(γ)3+ γδ+ T lymphocytes after irradiation and bone marrow transplantation

Fabrizio Poccia, Rosella Cicconi, Daniela Frasca, Camillo Mancini, Vittorio Colizzi, Gino Doria

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


The age-related decline in T cell functions is generally considered to be due to changes in the responding αβ T cell populations as a result of impairment of T cell differentiation in the thymus. T cells bearing the γδ TCR are normally a minor subset of circulating T cells, but often the major T cell type among lymphocytes in epithelial tissues. In this paper we show that γδ T cells are expanded in lymph nodes of irradiated mice after syngenic bone marrow transplantation. Interestingly, these γδ T cells express mainly the V(γ)3 TCR, which is characteristic of dendritic epithelial T cells that can develop in athymic nude mice and may recognize self antigens. Since the peripheral expansion of V(γ)3 T lymphocytes is closely related to bone marrow age, these observations indicate that the age-related propensity to extrathymic development of V(γ)3+ γδ+ T lymphocytes is mainly due to stem cell dysregulation in aging. This phenomenon may contribute to T cell impairment and to the increased natural cytotoxic activity of lymphoid cells in aged mice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)547-551
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Immunology
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Aging
  • Dendritic epithelial T cell
  • Mouse chimeras

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology


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