GSK3-mediated instability of tubulin polymers is responsible for the failure of immature CD4+CD8+thymocytes to polarize their MTOC in response to TCR stimulation
This is not in as prestigious a journal as the first paper described, but it is in a fine one (International Immunology) - and describes work that comes from our undergraduate lab alone. The work began years ago (Emily Hinchcliff, the co-first author, is almost finished with her medical school education at Harvard) but needed to be refined. We are perhaps even happier about this publication which represents the work of several students over several years. It may not take the world by storm, but it does add some very clear and crisp novel information about the molecular basis for differences in mature and immature T cell function. These differences underlie both our ability to generate an immune response and to avoid abnormal (autoimmune) responses - and are still rather mysterious. Specifically, we show that a kinase (GSK3) is regulated differently in the two cell types and is responsible for a failure of the young cells to develop a mature response to signals (polarization of a cytoskeletal structure). This 'failure' is probably a good thing and keeps the young cells from reacting before they have learned to modulate themselves. --author-supplied description
Cunningham, N*, Hinchcliff, E. * , Beck, T., Kutyavin, V., Reid, W ., and J. A. Punt . (2011) GSK3 mediated instability of tubulin polymers is responsible for the failure of CD4+CD8+ thymocytes to polarize th eir MTOC in response to TCR stimulation . Int. Immunology 23:693 - 700.