The function of a transgenic Dd class I molecule in the induction of immunologic tolerance to major histocompatibility complex antigens and in directing major histocompatibility complex restriction in C57BL/6 mice were investigated. All of the transgenic Dd mouse strains were found to be tolerant for the Dd antigen. Spleen cells from transgenic mice were immunocompetent but consistently failed to generate an anti-Dd cytotoxic T lymphocyte response in vitro, and skin grafts between transgenic Dd mice were not rejected. These data suggests that the Dd antigen was recognized as a self molecule. In addition, the transgenic Dd mice generated antigen-specific Dd-restricted cytotoxic T lymphocyte, indicating that the Dd antigen also functioned as a restriction element for antigen recognition. These observations demonstrate the usefulness of the transgenic mouse system for studying class I antigen expression and function.