Mice were immunized with model xenogeneic (both the VH frameworks and the CH domains of human origin), chimeric (just VH frameworks human), or self antibodies, and the antiantibody responses were dissected. Only the self antibody did not elicit a response. A strong response was elicited by the most xenogeneic antibody with approximately 90% against the C and approximately 10% against the V. The anti-V response was not attenuated in the chimeric antibody, demonstrating that foreign VH frameworks can be sufficient to lead to a strong antiantibody response. The magnitude of this xenogeneic anti-VH response was similar to that of the allotypic response elicited by immunizing mice of the Igha allotype with an Ighb antibody. Thus, although chimerization can diminish antiantibody responses, attention should be paid both to V region immunogenicity and to polymorphism.
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