A Mouse with a Monoclonal Primary lmmunoglobulin Repertoire not Further Diversified by V-Gene Replacement
We have generated a monoclonal B-cell mouse by introducing homozygous, nonfunctional RAG-2 alleles and a λ1 light-chain transgene into the quasi-monoclonal (QM) mouse, which contains a “knocked-in” VHDJH rearrangement. Thus, this mouse, which we call MonoB, is devoid of T cells and contains preformed heavy- and light-chain genes encoding immunoglobulin with an anti-NP specificity. The MonoB mouse allows us to examine immunoglobulin diversity in the absence of processes mediated by V(D)J recombination and T cells. Here we report that not only is the MonoB's primary immunoglobulin repertoire monoclonal, but also that its secondary repertoire is not further diversified by V-gene replacement or gene conversion. Among 99 heavy-chain and 41 λ light-chain genes from peripheral B cells of the MonoB mouse, there were no V-gene replacements. When compared to the QM mouse, which has RAG activity, and for which V-gene replacement is the major diversifying mechanism, these data suggest that V-gene replacement is mediated by V(D)J recombination and not by other recombination systems.