We studied the effect of the same genetic but different environmental factors on total immunoglobulin and specific antibody levels in twins reared apart. Sera were analyzed from 26 monozygotic (MZ) and 10 dizygotic (DZ) twin pairs, who were separated on average 2 mo after birth and reared apart. Total IgM, IgG, and IgA were measured by single radial diffusion. Specific antibodies of each isotype to tetanus toxoid, and to polyvalent and type 14 pneumococcal capsular polysaccharides were measured by a solid-phase antigen-enzyme-labeled anti-Ig immunoassay. One-way analysis of variance showed intrapair total Ig and antibody levels to be more highly correlated in MZ compared with DZ twins. Our results indicate that genetic factors are more important than environment in regulating these humoral immune responses.
P F Kohler, V J Rivera, E D Eckert, T J Bouchard Jr, L L Heston