We developed a monoclonal antibody (mAb) (9D7) against a synthetic peptide (P13K) selected from the deduced amino acid sequence of the constant region of the gamma chain of the murine T-cell antigen receptor (TCR) (amino acids 118-130). Using this mAb, we identified a putative second TCR expressed on peripheral blood lymphocytes from a patient with severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) that were propagated in culture with recombinant interleukin 2 (rIL-2) and Con A. This mAb immunoprecipitated two polypeptide chains of 40 and 58 kDa under nonreducing conditions and of 40 and 56 kDa under reducing conditions from 125I-labeled denatured lysates of T3+ WT31- lymphocytes expanded in culture from a SCID patient. These polypeptide chains were not disulfide linked and were not present on human peripheral blood lymphocytes from normal donors cultured for 5 days with phytohemagglutinin or for 2 weeks with rIL-2 and polyclonal activators or on cells of the Jurkat lymphoblastoid human T-cell line. Chemical crosslinking of 125I-labeled cells followed by immunoprecipitation with anti-Leu-4 mAb under nonreducing or reducing conditions revealed that the 40- and 56-kDa polypeptide chains were associated with the T3 differentiation antigen. These results were confirmed by sequential immunoprecipitation with anti-Leu-4 mAb followed by 9D7 anti-P13K mAb. The 9D7 anti-P13K mAb immunoprecipitated two polypeptide chains of 43 and 64 kDa from denatured lysates of lymphocytes from a patient with severe common variable immunodeficiency (CVI) that were expanded in culture with rIL-2 and Con A. Thus, this second TCR may be composed of two polypeptide chains (gamma gamma'), both of which appear to be the product of the gamma-chain gene. These experiments were done with polyclonal cell populations. Cloned T3+ WT31- cell populations are required to determine whether this TCR contains two gamma polypeptide chains. In contrast, only one polypeptide chain of 56 kDa was immunoprecipitated by the 9D7 anti-P13K mAb from peripheral blood lymphocytes from a patient with mild CVI expanded in culture with rIL-2 and polyclonal activators. Using the same 9D7 anti-P13K mAb and immunoblotting analysis, we identified a 35 kDa gamma-chain polypeptide under reducing conditions expressed on purified L3T4- Lyt2- BALB/c mouse thymocytes. This gamma-chain TCR is disulfide linked and has a molecular mass of 80 kDa under nonreducing conditions.