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The progressive maturation of T cells is accompanied by their migration through the thymus, with each selection stage occurring in distinct microenvironments. Many specialized receptor-ligand pairs have been defined that drive T cell differentiation, but our understanding of the complex relationship between T cells and the thymic stroma is incomplete. Recent reports have identified a role for the chemokine stromal cell-derived factor 1α and its receptor CXC chemokine receptor 4 in β-selection. This review explores these findings in detail.

Original publication




Journal article


Trends Immunol

Publication Date





370 - 376


Animals, Cell Differentiation, Chemokine CXCL12, Humans, Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell, alpha-beta, Receptors, CXCR4, Signal Transduction, Thymus Gland