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Developmental Immunology
Volume 5, Issue 4, Pages 303-318

MHC-Linked Syngeneic Developmental Preference in Thymic Lobes Colonized with Bone Marrow Cells: A Mathematical model

1Dept. of Molecular Biology, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey 08544, USA
2Theoretical Division, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, New Mexico, USA
3Department of Molecular Cell Biology, The Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot 76100, Israel
4Department of Applied Mathematics and Computer Science, The Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot 76100, Israel
5Department of Immunology, The Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot 76100, Israel

Received 6 January 1997; Revised 29 July 1997; Accepted 30 September 1997

Copyright © 1998 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Reconstitution of the T-cell compartment after bone marrow transplantation depends on successful colonization of the thymus by bone-marrow-derived progenitor cells. Recent studies compared the development of syngeneic and allogeneic bone-marrow-derived cells in cocultures with lymphoid-depleted fetal thymus explants, leading to the discovery of MHC-linked syngeneic developmental preference (SDP) in the thymus. To determine the nature of cell interactions among the bone marrow and thymic elements that might underlie SDP, we analyzed this phenomenon by mathematical modeling. The results indicate that syngeneic mature T cells, responsible for inducing this preference, probably interfere both with the seeding of allogeneic bone-marrow-derived thymocyte progenitors in the thymic stroma and with their subsequent proliferation. In addition, the possibility of augmented death among the developing allogeneic thymocytes cannot be ruled out.