The product of the LAG-3 gene is a cell surface protein with significant homology to CD4. It has been suggested that it can serve as a functional equivalent of CD4 and account for the MHC class II-restricted responses which persist in CD4-deficient mice. To test this hypothesis, we have created CD4/LAG-3 double-deficient mice by successive homologous recombinations in embryonic stem cells. These animals turn out to be indistinguishable from CD4 single-deficient mice in their lymphocyte populations and responses that are controlled by MHC class II molecules. LAG-3 thus does not explain class II-restricted lymphocyte selection and function in the absence of CD4, strengthening the idea that these phenomena can occur independently of co-receptor signalling.