Random recirculation of small T lymphocytes from thoracic duct lymph in the mouse

A. A. Freitas, Marlene Rose, Benedita Rocha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The migration of 51Cr-labeled nylon-wool separated mouse thoracic duct T cells has been followed in order to determine whether there is a circulation of small (nondividing) T cells through the small intestine. Approximately 6% of the injected dose of T-TDL localized in the small intestine (minus Peyer's patches). Experiments revealed that this gut-localizing cell population consisted almost entirely, if not exclusively, of lymphoblasts present in mouse T-TDL. When lymphoblasts and small lymphocytes from mouse T-TDL were separated by velocity sedimentation, and the migration of separated fractions was studied, we found large cells (66% blasts) migrated well to the gut but poorly to the lymph nodes, whereas small cells (2% blasts) showed minimal migration to the gut but localized randomly in lymph nodes and spleen. The in vivo distribution of small cells from T-TDL was similar to that of T-PLN. Furthermore, the recirculatory patterns of both 51Cr-labeled T-TDL and T-PLN were found to be identical as accessed by their rate of recovery in the thoracic duct lymph of recipient mice. These results support the notion that the vast majority of T-TDL and T-PLN are part of a common pool of recirculating T cells which recirculate randomly through lymph nodes and spleen and not the small intestine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-39
Number of pages11
JournalCellular Immunology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1980


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