Yousuke Takahama

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Lympho-stromal interactions in multiple microenvironments within the thymus have a crucial role in the regulation of T-cell development and selection. Recent studies have implicated that chemokines that are produced by thymic stromal cells have a pivotal role in positioning developing T cells within the thymus. In this Review, I discuss the importance of(More)
The resetting of a somatic epigenotype to a totipotential state has been demonstrated by successful animal cloning, via transplantation of somatic nuclei into enucleated oocytes. We have established an experimental system, which reproduces the nuclear reprogramming of somatic cells in vitro by fusing adult thymocytes with embryonic stem (ES) cells. Analysis(More)
Proteasomes are responsible for generating peptides presented by the class I major histocompatibility complex (MHC) molecules of the immune system. Here, we report the identification of a previously unrecognized catalytic subunit called beta5t. beta5t is expressed exclusively in cortical thymic epithelial cells, which are responsible for the positive(More)
Medullary thymic epithelial cells (mTECs) establish T cell self-tolerance through the expression of autoimmune regulator (Aire) and peripheral tissue-specific self-antigens. However, signals underlying mTEC development remain largely unclear. Here, we demonstrate crucial regulation of mTEC development by receptor activator of NF-kappaB (RANK) and CD40(More)
The thymus represents an epithelial-mesenchymal tissue, anatomically structured into discrete cortical and medullary regions that contain phenotypically and functionally distinct stromal cells, as well as thymocytes at defined stages of maturation. The stepwise progression of thymocyte development seems to require serial migration through these distinct(More)
The thymic medulla provides a microenvironment where medullary thymic epithelial cells (mTECs) express autoimmune regulator and diverse tissue-restricted genes, contributing to launching self-tolerance. Positive selection is essential for thymic medulla formation via a previously unknown mechanism. Here we show that the cytokine RANK ligand (RANKL) was(More)
Dendritic cells (DCs) in the thymus (tDCs) are predominantly accumulated in the medulla and contribute to the establishment of self-tolerance. However, how the medullary accumulation of tDCs is regulated and involved in self-tolerance is unclear. We show that the chemokine receptor XCR1 is expressed by tDCs, whereas medullary thymic epithelial cells (mTECs)(More)
The IAN (immune-associated nucleotide-binding protein) family is a family of functionally uncharacterized GTP-binding proteins expressed in vertebrate immune cells and in plant cells during antibacterial responses. Here we show that all eight IAN family genes encoded in a single cluster of mouse genome are predominantly expressed in lymphocytes, and that(More)
How self-peptides displayed in the thymus contribute to the development of immunocompetent and self-protective T cells is largely unknown. In contrast, the role of thymic self-peptides in eliminating self-reactive T cells and thereby preventing autoimmunity is well established. A type of proteasome, termed thymoproteasome, is specifically expressed by(More)
Medullary thymic epithelial cells (mTECs) are specialized for inducing central immunological tolerance to self-antigens. To accomplish this, mTECs must adopt a mature phenotype characterized by expression of the autoimmune regulator Aire, which activates the transcription of numerous genes encoding tissue-restricted self-antigens. The mechanisms that(More)