The idiotype present on the Fab of a phosphorylcholine-binding IgA myeloma protein TEPC 15 (T15) of BALB/c origin was found in normal serum of BALB/c mice. Molecules carrying the T15 idiotype in normal serum could be adsorbed with Sepharose phosphorylcholine beads and R36A pneumococci. The T15 idiotype is absent in germ-free BALB/c but appears when the mice are conventionalized. A survey of normal sera of inbred strains for the T15 idiotype showed it to be present in BALB/c, 129, C57L, C58, and ST and absent or in low levels in CBA, C3H, C57BL/6, C57BL/Ka, C57BL/10, SJL, B10.D2, DBA/2, RIII, A, AL, AKR, NZB, and NH inbred strains of mice. The T15 idiotype is associated with some but not all strains carrying the IgCH allotypes found in BALB/c. Linkage of genes controlling the T15 idiotype in normal serum to the IgCH locus of BALB/c was demonstrated in F2 progeny of a BALB/c and C57BL cross, Bailey's recombinant inbred strains, C x BD, C x BE, C x BG, C x BH, C x BI, C x BJ, C x BK, and CB20 congenic strains. Among these strains, only those possessing the IgCH locus of BALB/c including the F2 progeny consisting of BALB/c homozygotes and BALB/c/C57BL heterozygotes and C x BG and C x BJ recombinants showed the T15 idiotype.

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