T lymphocytes acquire their essential characteristics during development in the thymus. These properties—clonal expression of antigen receptors, major histocompatibility complex (MHC) restriction, self-tolerance, and lineage specific effector function—are continually established in the thymus as progenitors develop throughout the life of the animal. These researchers study how MHC restriction and self-tolerance are imprinted using genetically engineered mouse models. Current approaches include flow cytometry, microarrays, RNA-seq, and fluorescent imaging.
This research was featured on the MSI website in October 2014: Genetic Studies of Epstein-Barr Virus Infection.