The inheritance of idiotypes was investigated using idiotypic antisera against two monoclonal antibodies to streptococcal carbohydrates derived from A/J mice. Each of the two idiotypes was characterized by a special frequency of expression. One of the idiotypes was expressed in more than 80% of A/J mice, the other in less than 20%.

The idiotypes of both antibodies were strain specific and were transmitted to (A/J x BALB/cJ)F1 hybrid mice. Furthermore, both idiotypes remained associated with the A/J heavy chain C region allotype in (A/J x BALB/cJ)F1 hybrid mice. The results suggest that idiotypes are specified by allelic V genes, and that the heavy chain idiotype locus is linked to the heavy chain allotype locus.

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