Interphotoreceptor retinoid-binding protein (IRBP), a glycoprotein which localizes in the retina and pineal gland, induces inflammatory changes in these organs (EAU and EAP, respectively) when injected into various mammals. We have previously identified a determinant (residues 1169-1191) in bovine IRBP which is immunodominant and highly immunogenic and immunopathogenic in Lewis rats. IRBP exhibits a fourfold repeat structure and we report here on the comparison between the active sequence 1179-1191 and its three repeat peptides. Only one of the repeats, 271-283, cross-reacted with 1179-1191 and exhibited immunodominance, albeit of a low level. Peptide 271-283 was also immunogenic and immunopathogenic in Lewis rats, but with a minimal dose ~ 100 times higher than that of 1179-1191. Peptide 880-892, a nondominant determinant, resembled 271-283 in its immunogenicity, but was markedly less immunopathogenic. No immunological activity was detected in the fourth repeat peptide, 579-591. Peptide 1179-1191 was superior to the other repeats also in its antigenicity, i.e., the capacity to stimulate presensitized lymphocytes in culture: the minimal stimulatory concentrations of 1179-1191 was >1000 times lower than those of 271-283 or 880-892. Furthermore, 1179-1191 was stimulatory at concentrations lower than those of 271-283 even when tested with lymphocytes sensitized against 271-283. A correlation was also found between the immunological activities of the repeat peptides and their amphipathicity. This study thus identifies two new immunopathogenic determinants of IRBP and provides additional data to show the association between immunodominance of peptides and their various immunological activities.