Letter from Florence R. Sabin to Rudolph J. Anderson
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2 (159,982 Bytes)
1928-11-16 (November 16, 1928)
Sabin, Florence R.
Anderson, Rudolph J.
Original Repository: American Philosophical Society. Library. Florence R. Sabin Papers
Reproduced with permission of Geraldine F. Swan.
Medical Subject Headings (MeSH):
At the Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research, 1925-1938
Anderson, Rudolph J., #13
November 16, 1928
My dear Doctor Anderson:
You will be interested to know that the avian phospholipin gives the same reaction in the rabbit as the phospholipin from
the human bacilli. We have some very beautiful preparations of the omentum supravitally stained and then photographed, which
will show this. One of the rabbits showed atypical epitheloid cells.
We started to analyze all of our records of the guinea pigs and found that every time we had given any of the phospholipin
from H-37 there had been a very great irritation -- local absesses -- so we repeated the experiments and got the same thing.
You will remember that when we first began using the guinea pigs it was as a check in connection with the question of possible
tubercle bacilli persisting, and we demonstrated completely that there could be no viable tubercle bacilli because the guinea
pigs did not give the tuberculin reaction. Of course they did develop epithelloid cells, but when the animals were allowed
to live a long time, this tissue was wholly resorbed, showing that there were no tubercle bacilli. The acute irritation we
are now studying has to do with whether we introduce any pyogenic organisms or not. Of course the substance is not sterile,
but certainly the rabbits take care of any organisms that we introduce without any difficulty. Cultures from the peritoneal
cavity of the guinea pigs are negative for organisms, and we cannot stain any in our smears. But to make the point doubly
sure, that the phospholipin from the H-37 is more irritating to the guinea pig than the rabbit, we want to ask you this question:
Could we dissolve a little of the A-3 in absolute and ether, filter that under sterile precautions, and evaporate to dryness
and obtain the A-3 in its original state? That Doctor Flexner suggested as a final test to be quite sure that we are not
delaing with any pyogenic infection. Of course we think our best check will come when we was the fatty acid in the guinea
pig, because there will be no possible question of infection.
I think we may be on the track of a very interesting point if it does prove that the A-3 is more irritating to the guinea
pigs. The cells that the A-3 produces in the guinea pig are difference from those in the rabbit in that they take up apparently
much larger masses of the material, become extremely swollen, and atypical. This, of course, is the beginning of the whole
subject of the comparative study of the three strains in the different animals.
The experiments with the sodium and potassium salts are under way and we will report to you as soon as we have any results.