Cynomolgus macaque (Macaca fascicularis) is an attractive animal model for the study of human disease and is extensively used in biomedical research. Cynomolgus macaques share behavioral, physiological, and genomic traits with humans and recapitulate human disease manifestations not observed in other animal species. To improve the use of the cynomolgus macaque model to investigate immune responses, we defined and characterized the T cell receptor (TCR) repertoire. We identified and analyzed the alpha (TRA), beta (TRB), gamma (TRG), and delta (TRD) TCR loci of the cynomolgus macaque. The expressed repertoire was determined using 22 unique lung samples from Mycobacterium tuberculosis infected cynomolgus macaques by single cell RNA sequencing. Expressed TCR alpha (TRAV) and beta (TRBV) variable region genes were enriched and identified using gene specific primers, which allowed their functional status to be determined. Analysis of the primers used for cynomolgus macaque TCR variable region gene enrichment showed they could also be used to amplify rhesus macaque (M. mulatta) variable region genes. The genomic organization of the cynomolgus macaque has great similarity with the rhesus macaque and they shared > 90% sequence similarity with the human TCR repertoire. The identification of the TCR repertoire facilitates analysis of T cell immunity in cynomolgus macaques.
Identification and characterization of the T cell receptor (TCR) repertoire of the cynomolgus macaque (Macaca Fascicularis)