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J Mol Biol. 1999 Nov 26;294(2):457-65.

Dominance of intrinsic genetic factors in shaping the human immunoglobulin Vlambda repertoire.

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  • 1MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Hills Road, Cambridge, CB2 2QH, UK. oil@mrc-lmb.cam.ac.uk


The expressed human immunoglobulin Vlambda repertoire demonstrates a strong bias in the use of individual Vlambda segments. Mechanisms that underlie such biases can be divided into two categories: intrinsic genetic processes that lead to the preferential rearrangement and/or expression of certain segments; and selection following light chain expression. Here, we have used two approaches to investigate the factors that shape the human Vlambda repertoire. Firstly, we characterised 136 Vlambda rearrangements (59 productive and 77 non-productive) amplified from the human genomic DNA of peripheral blood cells. Secondly, we analysed Vlambda segment use in a library of 2000 cDNA clones from a transgenic mouse containing a 380 kb region (including 15 functional Vlambda segments) from the human immunoglobulin lambda locus. By hybridisation and sequencing we found that the patterns of use of human Vlambda segments in the transgenic mouse were similar to those found in the expressed human peripheral blood repertoire and in productive and non-productive genomic DNA rearrangements. These data indicate the importance of intrinsic genetic factors in shaping the human Vlambda repertoire and highlight the remarkable conservation of the molecular mechanisms involved in the production of the antibody repertoire in mouse and man. Therefore, transgenic mice represent a good model for analysis of the human antibody repertoire and for the production of human antibodies.

Copyright 1999 Academic Press.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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