Open squares) and WT control (full circle) mice. Mean value: dash

Open squares) and WT control (full circle) mice. Mean value: dash line. C. Proportion and absolute numbers of cd TCR expressing thymocytes in MEN2B (open squares) and WT control (full circle) mice. Mean value: dash line. D. Absolute thymocyte numbers. Two-tailed student t-test analysis was performed between knockouts and respective controls. No statistically significant differences were found. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0052949.gcell development in vivo appears to be insignificant. Moreover, while FTOCs reproduce several aspects of T cell development [30], they fail to mimic the exact events in T cell development [31,32], and therefore these different methodologies may also contribute to the observed discrepancies.GDNF/GFRa1 have been shown to activate the transmembrane receptor RET and the neural cell order 58-49-1 adhesion molecule (NCAM) in neurons [33,34]. Thus, although activation of a putative NCAM analogue by GDNF cannot be fully discarded in thymocytes, this is unlikely to have a significant physiologicalRET Signalling and T Cell DevelopmentFigure 6. Competitive fitness and thymic reconstitution of Ret-null thymocytes. A. Experimental scheme: 9Gy irradiated hosts (Rag12/2, CD45.1) received WT competitor precursors (CD45.1/2) together with hCD2Cre/Retnull/fl or control hCD2Cre2/Retwt/fl precursors (CD45.2). B. 8 weeks after 25033180 transplantation the thymus of the generated Imazamox web chimeras was analyzed by flow cytometry. Results show the ratio between hCD2Cre/Retnull/fl (grey bar) or hCD2Cre2/Retwt/fl (black bar) and the third part WT competitor (CD45.1/2) through thymic T cell development. hCD2Cre/Retnull/fl precursor chimeras: n = 4; hCD2Cre2/Retwt/fl precursor chimeras n = 4. Error bars show s.d. Two-tailed student t-tests were performed. No significant differences were found. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0052949.grelevance since NCAM downstream signalling requires GFRa1 and Gfra12/2 embryos displayed normal thymopoiesis [33]. In order to overcome possible viability/proliferative compensatory mechanisms that may arise through T cell development, we performed sensitive competitive reconstitution assays in vivo with Ret deficient (CD2Cre/Retnull/fl) and Ret competent (CD2Cre/ RetWT/fl) thymocytes. Our data demonstrate that even in a very sensitive competitive setting the fitness of Ret deficient T cell precursors is intact. 23727046 Finally, our findings indicate that pharmacological inhibition of the RET pathway in severe pathologies, such as medullary thyroid cancer, should not be confronted with undesirable T cell production failure [15,16]. In summary, our data demonstrate that RET signalling is dispensable to foetal and adult T cell development in vivo. Nevertheless, RET and its signalling partners are also expressed by mature T cells [19], thus, lineage targeted strategies will be critical to elucidate the contribution of RET signals to T cell function.Materials and Methods MiceC57Bl/6J (CD45.2, CD45.1 and CD45.1/CD45.2), Rag12/2 (CD45.2 and CD45.1) [35], CD2Cre [23], Gfra12/2 [20], Gfra22/ 2 [21], Ret2/2 [22], and RetMEN2B [24] all in C57Bl/6J background, were bred and maintained at the IMM animal facility. All animal procedures were performed in accordance to national guidelines from the Direcao Geral de Veterinaria (permit ?number 420000000/2008) and approved by the committee on the ethics of animal experiments of the Instituto de Medicina Molecular.Generation of Ret conditional knockout miceTo generate mice harbouring a conditional Ret knock-out allele we engin.Open squares) and WT control (full circle) mice. Mean value: dash line. C. Proportion and absolute numbers of cd TCR expressing thymocytes in MEN2B (open squares) and WT control (full circle) mice. Mean value: dash line. D. Absolute thymocyte numbers. Two-tailed student t-test analysis was performed between knockouts and respective controls. No statistically significant differences were found. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0052949.gcell development in vivo appears to be insignificant. Moreover, while FTOCs reproduce several aspects of T cell development [30], they fail to mimic the exact events in T cell development [31,32], and therefore these different methodologies may also contribute to the observed discrepancies.GDNF/GFRa1 have been shown to activate the transmembrane receptor RET and the neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM) in neurons [33,34]. Thus, although activation of a putative NCAM analogue by GDNF cannot be fully discarded in thymocytes, this is unlikely to have a significant physiologicalRET Signalling and T Cell DevelopmentFigure 6. Competitive fitness and thymic reconstitution of Ret-null thymocytes. A. Experimental scheme: 9Gy irradiated hosts (Rag12/2, CD45.1) received WT competitor precursors (CD45.1/2) together with hCD2Cre/Retnull/fl or control hCD2Cre2/Retwt/fl precursors (CD45.2). B. 8 weeks after 25033180 transplantation the thymus of the generated chimeras was analyzed by flow cytometry. Results show the ratio between hCD2Cre/Retnull/fl (grey bar) or hCD2Cre2/Retwt/fl (black bar) and the third part WT competitor (CD45.1/2) through thymic T cell development. hCD2Cre/Retnull/fl precursor chimeras: n = 4; hCD2Cre2/Retwt/fl precursor chimeras n = 4. Error bars show s.d. Two-tailed student t-tests were performed. No significant differences were found. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0052949.grelevance since NCAM downstream signalling requires GFRa1 and Gfra12/2 embryos displayed normal thymopoiesis [33]. In order to overcome possible viability/proliferative compensatory mechanisms that may arise through T cell development, we performed sensitive competitive reconstitution assays in vivo with Ret deficient (CD2Cre/Retnull/fl) and Ret competent (CD2Cre/ RetWT/fl) thymocytes. Our data demonstrate that even in a very sensitive competitive setting the fitness of Ret deficient T cell precursors is intact. 23727046 Finally, our findings indicate that pharmacological inhibition of the RET pathway in severe pathologies, such as medullary thyroid cancer, should not be confronted with undesirable T cell production failure [15,16]. In summary, our data demonstrate that RET signalling is dispensable to foetal and adult T cell development in vivo. Nevertheless, RET and its signalling partners are also expressed by mature T cells [19], thus, lineage targeted strategies will be critical to elucidate the contribution of RET signals to T cell function.Materials and Methods MiceC57Bl/6J (CD45.2, CD45.1 and CD45.1/CD45.2), Rag12/2 (CD45.2 and CD45.1) [35], CD2Cre [23], Gfra12/2 [20], Gfra22/ 2 [21], Ret2/2 [22], and RetMEN2B [24] all in C57Bl/6J background, were bred and maintained at the IMM animal facility. All animal procedures were performed in accordance to national guidelines from the Direcao Geral de Veterinaria (permit ?number 420000000/2008) and approved by the committee on the ethics of animal experiments of the Instituto de Medicina Molecular.Generation of Ret conditional knockout miceTo generate mice harbouring a conditional Ret knock-out allele we engin.