Three independent T cell hybridomas were isolated that have identical specificities for antigen and products of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). All three react with the same clone-specific antireceptor antibody, and Southern blots show all three contain the same rearranged alpha and beta genes. Variants of one of these hybridomas, DO-11.10, were isolated that had lost the ability to respond to antigen plus MHC. These proved to have lost the DO-11.10-specific alpha or beta genes or both. Fusion of alpha-loss variants to beta-loss variants restored reactivity. These results indicate that the specific recognition of antigen plus MHC is determined solely by the alpha/beta-containing T cell receptor.