Genes in the major histocompatibility complex (H-2) of the mouse control several immune functions as well as various facets of testosterone (Te) physiology. In order to study the genetic control of Te-induced immune suppression, complete Freund's adjuvant (CFA; containing Mycobacteria tuberculosis) was administered parenterally to several mouse strains differing at the H-2 complex which were either sham- or Te-treated. The specific lymphocyte proliferative response to purified protein derivative (PPD) was measured in draining lymph node cells. The response to PPD in strains bearing H-2b (B6 and B10) but not H-2d (B10.D2 and DBA/2) or H-2k (B10.BR and AKR) haplotypes was markedly lower in Te-implanted compared to shamimplanted controls. This result suggests that the ability of Te to dampen the immune response to PPD is regulated by H-2-linked gene(s).
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