We studied the arrangement of the immunoglobulin heavy chain genes by Southern blot analysis of DNA freshly obtained from marrow blast cells of 14 children with T cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) using probes to the C mu and JH gene segments: At least one of the C mu-gene alleles was rearranged in three cases. In two of these, one C mu gene had the germ-line configuration and one was rearranged, whereas both alleles were rearranged in the third case. In one case, a rearranged heavy chain gene hybridized to the C mu-region probe, but not to the JH probe, indicating that the entire JH region had been deleted. These results demonstrate that immunoglobulin heavy chain gene rearrangements are not restricted to B lineage lymphoproliferative diseases in humans.

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