As a first step toward defining the molecular interactions between ligands and the IgE antigen-combining site, we report here the cDNA cloning and variable (V) region nucleic acid sequences of the heavy (H) and light (L) chains of 2 monoclonal mouse IgE antibodies to trinitrophenyl (ATCC-TIB142 = IGELa2 and ATCC-TIB141 = IGELb4). In all instances, full-length cDNA clones were obtained to facilitate future expression studies. The H chains were encoded by VH genes from the VH3660 and J558 gene families in context with DQ52 and DSP2.2 diversity (D) mini genes, and JH3 and JH4 joining (J) gene segments, respectively. Vk8/Jk2 and Vk1/Jk5 rearrangements encoded the respective L chain V-regions. Both antibodies exhibited considerable conservation of complementarity determining region (CDR) sequences, which will facilitate template-based computer modeling of the three-dimensional structures of complexes formed between various ligands and these antibodies. From sequence comparison between the dinitrophenyl (DNP)-binding myeloma protein MOPC-315 and these IgE antibodies likely candidates for hapten-contact residues within the binding sites of IGELa2 and IGELb4 have been suggested.