The treatment of hamsters with either irradiation (IR) or cyclophosphamide (CYP) markedly alters select aspects of their cellular immune functions in a dose-related manner. One mechanism that may be responsible for this activity appears to be the dimunition of a T-lymphocyte subpopulation that exerts suppressive influence upon the B-lymphocyte reactivity toward antigens. This study shows that in the hamster, immune susceptibility is affected by the magnitude and orientation of these agents (ie, IR, CYP) as they temporally relate to immunization and/or challenge with the antigen. Moreover, there is evidence that T-independent as well as T-dependent responses are affected by these treatments. Therefore, cyclophosphamide and irradiation modalities can be employed to modify the cellular immune responses in the hamster.