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Klein, Ludger; Robey, Ellen A.; Hsieh, Chyi-Song (2018): Central CD4(+) T cell tolerance: deletion versus regulatory T cell differentiation. In: Nature Reviews Immunology
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Abstract

The diversion of MHC class II-restricted thymocytes into the regulatory T (Treg) cell lineage is driven by intrathymic encounter of agonist self-antigens in a similar manner to the clonal deletion of thymocytes. Somewhat paradoxically, it thus seems that the expression of an autoreactive T cell receptor is a shared characteristic of T cells that are subject to clonal deletion and T cells that are diverted into the Treg cell lineage. Here, we discuss how thymocyte-intrinsic and thymocyte-extrinsic determinants may specify the choice between these two fundamentally different T cell fates.