CBA/N mice have an X-linked genetic defect in B-lymphocyte function manifested by inability to make antibody responses to T-independent antigens. Plasma membrane immunoglobulin (Ig) on spleen, lymph node, and Peyer's patch cells was analyzed by lactoperoxidase-catalyzed iodination, NP-40 extraction, specific immunoprecipitation, and sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. These studies indicated that the X-linked immune defect was associated, in all three cell types, with a decrease in the ratio of cell membrane IgD analog to cell membrane IgM. This suggests either that IgD analog may be important in initiation of T-independent antibody responses or that CBA/N mice lack a subpopulation of B cells specialized to respond to T-independent antigens, and that these cells are relatively rich in plasma membrane IgD analog.

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