Intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) administration has been beneficially used for the treatment of a variety of autoimmune diseases including myasthenia gravis (MG). We have demonstrated that IVIG administration in experimental autoimmune MG (EAMG) results in suppression of disease that is accompanied by decreased Th1 cell and B cell proliferation. Chromatography of pooled human immunoglobulins (IVIGs) on immobilized IgG, isolated from rats with EAMG, results in a complete depletion of the suppressive activity of the IVIG. Moreover, the eluate from this EAMG-specific antibody column retains the immunosuppressive activity of IVIG. This study supports the notion that the therapeutic effect of IVIGs is mediated by an antigen-specific anti-immunoglobulin (anti-idiotypic) activity that is essential for its suppressive activity.