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By Frank J. Dixon (Ed.)

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The Impact of Environment on Primary B Cell Repertoire Expression The expressed B cell repertoire is the product of the molecular events responsible for generating the clonally distributed population of B cells as well as effects of environmental influences in up- or down-regulating various preexisting specificities and participating in the generation and selection of new specificities. During the past decade our progress in understanding the contribution of environmental influences on repertoire expression and in understanding the mechanisms which underlie these contributions has been steady but far less dramatic than the progress in understanding the molecular basis for repertoire expression.

The findings indicated that the D most proximal gene family V,, 7183 (see Fig. 1) rearranged with the highest frequency and, in particular, the v h 81X gene rearranged more frequently than any others in this family. The second most frequently rearranged V,, family was the Vh Q52 family which is the next most D proximal v h gene segment family in the BALB/c mice and appears to be inter- CLONOTYPE REPERTOIRE OF B CELL SUBPOPULATIONS 29 mixed with the 7183 v,,family in certain mouse strains. The extensive utilization in these hybridomas of the D most proximal V , gene families led to the proposition that the skewing of the early neonatal h gene repertoire was the result of a sequential utilization of v h gene segments segments which followed from the D most proximal v upstream and ultimately all v,,region gene segment families.

As detailed above, the response of Igh" mice to the haptenic determinant NP is characterized by serum antibodies predominated by B cells bearing the A light chain and which have a lower affinity for NP than for many analogs of NP. In an analysis of sIg- bone marrow precursor cells specific for NP obtained from Igh" mice, it was found that the frequency of precursor cells whose progeny produced K-bearing antibodies was considerably higher than would have been anticipated from the frequency of such cells obtained from the splenic B cell pool (Riley and Klinman, 1985).

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