Polycomb group (PcG) gene products regulate homeobox gene expression in Drosophila and vertebrates and also cell cycle progression of immature lymphocytes. In a gene-disrupted mouse for polycomb group gene mel-18, mature peripheral T cells exhibited normal anti-TCR-induced proliferation; however, the production of Th2 cytokines (IL-4, IL-5, and IL-13) was significantly reduced, whereas production of IFNgamma was modestly enhanced. Th2 cell differentiation was impaired, and the defect was associated with decreased levels in demethylation of the IL-4 gene. Significantly, reduced GATA3 induction was demonstrated. In vivo antigen-induced IgG1 production and Nippostrongylus brasiliensis-induced eosinophilia were significantly affected, reflecting the deficit in Th2 cell differentiation. Thus, the PcG gene products play a critical role in the control of Th2 cell differentiation and Th2-dependent immune responses.