Functional transplant of megabase human immunoglobulin loci recapitulates human antibody response in mice

Nat Genet. 1997 Feb;15(2):146-56. doi: 10.1038/ng0297-146.


We constructed two megabase-sized YACs containing large contiguous fragments of the human heavy and kappa (kappa) light chain immunoglobulin (Ig) loci in nearly germline configuration, including approximately 66 VH and 32 V kappa genes. We introduced these YACs into Ig-inactivated mice and observed human antibody production which closely resembled that seen in humans in all respects, including gene rearrangement, assembly, and repertoire. Diverse Ig gene usage together with somatic hypermutation enables the mice to generate high affinity fully human antibodies to multiple antigens, including human proteins. Our results underscore the importance of the large Ig fragments with multiple V genes for restoration of a normal humoral immune response. These mice are likely to be a valuable tool for the generation of therapeutic antibodies.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / biosynthesis
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / genetics
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / immunology
  • Antibody Affinity
  • Antibody Diversity
  • Antibody Formation*
  • B-Lymphocytes / cytology
  • B-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Chromosomes, Artificial, Yeast / genetics
  • ErbB Receptors / immunology
  • Gene Rearrangement, B-Lymphocyte
  • Genes, Immunoglobulin*
  • Humans
  • Hybridomas / immunology
  • Immunoglobulin Heavy Chains / biosynthesis
  • Immunoglobulin Heavy Chains / genetics
  • Immunoglobulin kappa-Chains / biosynthesis
  • Immunoglobulin kappa-Chains / genetics
  • Interleukin-8 / immunology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Species Specificity
  • Transgenes*
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / immunology


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Immunoglobulin Heavy Chains
  • Immunoglobulin kappa-Chains
  • Interleukin-8
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
  • ErbB Receptors