Previous studies have shown that antigens preferentially stimulate IgG subclasses. However, the immunologic processes responsible for the patterns of IgG subclasses stimulated by antigens are probably complex and are certainly unclear. To define some of the genetic controls of IgG subclass expression in mice, we have studied the patterns of IgG subclasses elicited by antigens in BALB/cAn, C57BL/6N, derived recombinant inbred strains, and derived Ig congenic strains. This study shows that both thymus-independent antigens and thymus-dependent antigens stimulate different patterns of IgG subclasses in BALB/cAn and C57BL/6N. Furthermore, analysis using recombinant inbred strains and Ig congenic strains shows that the patterns of IgG subclasses stimulated by all antigens are linked to Ig allotype. In contrast, only the IgG subclass patterns stimulated by thymus-dependent antigens are linked to major histocompatibility complex haplotype. This study also shows that the Ig allotype-linked controls of IgG subclass response patterns are located telomeric to a BAB14 intra-heavy chain variable region recombinant site. Therefore, this region of mouse chromosome 12 may contribute to the control of IgG subclass selection in the B cell.

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