High affinity murine A/J anti-digoxin monoclonal antibodies exhibit diversity in binding specificity for structurally related cardiac glycosides. They utilize several VH and VL genes. Among this diverse set, however, five antibodies share V region amino-terminal sequences that are remarkably homologous. The five antibodies were divided into three subsets based on different fine specificity-binding patterns. Therefore, complete V region sequences were determined by Edman degradation and by nucleotide sequence analysis. The VH region homology among the five antibodies was 84 to 100% and the VL region homology was 89 to 99%. The sequence data are consistent with the use of single (or closely related) VH and VL genes encoding the five antibodies. Four antibodies, derived from the same fusion (40-40, 40-120, 40-140, and 40-160), use identical D, JH2, and JK5 gene segments and identical junctions suggesting that they are clonally related. The fifth antibody (35-20) uses different D and JH1 gene segments but the same JK5 gene segment. All five antibodies share a cross-reactive idiotype. The three antibodies that exhibit the greatest degree of homology (40-40, 40-120, and 40-140) also share indistinguishable antigen-binding patterns as well as private idiotopes not present on the other two antibodies. Antibody 40-160, which has the next most homologous sequence, shares idiotopes with the first set but binds preferentially to different sites on the hapten, whereas antibody 35-20 has the most divergent sequence. In general, the degree of sequence homology among the five antibodies correlates with their hierarchical order based on hapten and idiotype fine specificity patterns.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.