Essential role of IL-7 receptor α in the formation of Peyer's patch anlage

Satoko Adachi, Hisahiro Yoshida, Kenya Honda, Kazushige Maki, Kaoru Saijo, Kohichi Ikuta, Takashi Saito, Shin Ichi Nishikawa

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151 Citations (Scopus)


We investigated the role of IL-7 receptor α (IL-7Rα) signal in the formation of Peyer's patch (PP) anlage. Although pan-lymphopenia is a common phenotype of rag2(-/-) and il7rα(-/-) mice, a close inspection revealed nodules corresponding to PP in the adult rag2(-/-) but not in the il7rα(-/-) mouse. In our previous study, three histologically distinct steps in the formation of PP were identified. The first is the appearance of VCAM-1+ spots in the intestine, which probably represents an initial stage of the formation of the PP anlage. Accumulation of cells bearing IL-7Rα, CD4 or Ia in this region then follows and eventually entry of mature lymphocytes expressing CD3 or B220 occurs just before birth. Based on this criterion, we next investigated which of these events is defective in mice with severe combined immunodeficiency. Formation of VCAM-1+ spots and cluster formation of IL-7Rα+ cells proceed normally in the rag2(-/-) mouse which completely lacks mature lymphocytes. In contrast, no VCAM-1+ spots were detected in the embryonic nor neonatal il7rα(-/-) mice, suggesting that IL-7Rα signal is involved in the early phase of PP anlage formation. The same defect was found in the jak3(-/-) mouse. In addition to the appearance of VCAM1+ spots, the clustering of IL-7Rα+ cells was absent in the jak3(-/-) mouse, though IL-7Rα+ cells are found to scatter over the intestine. These results indicate that IL-7Rα is an essential signal for an early step of PP anlage formation, without which the subsequent processes cannot be initiated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
JournalInternational immunology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • IL-7 receptor
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Jak3
  • Peyer's patch

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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