Although IgG antibodies and eosinophils have been shown to kill schistosomula of Schistosoma mansoni in vitro, very little data exist that describe the role of each IgG antibody isotype in this event. This study was designed to test the role of each IgG subclass in the eosinophil-dependent killing reaction. IgG antibodies purified by protein G or protein A affinity chromatography demonstrated a killing effect only in the presence of eosinophils activated in vivo or normal eosinophils activated in vitro by eosinophil activating factor. Purification of each IgG isotype allowed confirmation of these results and demonstrated that the killing effect was associated with IgG1 and IgG3 antibodies. IgG2 antibodies expressed a dual function: 1) an effector function with activated eosinophils and 2) a blocking function with normal eosinophils. IgG4 antibodies, whatever the source of eosinophils, blocked the killing mediated by IgG effector antibodies. These findings are discussed in relation to immunity and susceptibility to reinfection in human schistosomiasis.