Cutting edge: Antigen-dependent regulation of telomerase activity in murine T cells

Karen S. Hathcock, Nan Ping Weng, Rebecca Merica, Marc Jenkins, Richard Hodes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

68 Scopus citations


Telomeres, structures on the ends of linear chromosomes, function to maintain chromosomal integrity. Telomere shortening occurs with cell division and provides a mechanism for limiting the replicative potential of normal human somatic cells. Telomerase, a ribonucleoprotein enzyme, synthesize telomeric repeats on chromosomal termini, potentially extending the capacity for cell division. The present study demonstrates that resting T cells express little/no activity, and optimal Ag-specific induction of telomerase activity in vitro requires both TCR and CD28-B7 costimulatory signals. Regulation of telomerase in T cells during in vivo Ag-dependent activation was also assessed by adoptive transfer of TCR transgenic T cells and subsequent Ag challenge. Under these conditions, telomerase was induced in transgenic T cells coincident with a phase of extensive clonal expansion. These findings suggests that telomerase may represent an adoptive response that functions to preserve replicative potential in Ag-reactive lymphocytes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5702-5706
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jun 15 1998


Dive into the research topics of 'Cutting edge: Antigen-dependent regulation of telomerase activity in murine T cells'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this