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May 1949

DESTRUCTION OF NERVE CELLS BY RICKETTSIAL ORGANISMS OF TSUTSUGAMUSHI FEVER

Author Affiliations

ITHACA, N. Y.; COLUMBUS, OHIO

From Department of Zoology, Cornell University (Dr. Papez), and the Columbus State Hospital (Dr. Bateman).

Arch NeurPsych. 1949;61(5):545-557. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1949.02310110080004
Abstract

TSUTSUGAMUSHI fever (scrub typhus) is a disease caused by Rickettsia nipponica (orientalis), which is transmitted to the human being from the bite of the larva of a trombiculid mite. From the site of the bite the organisms are carried by the blood stream to the leptomeninges and are distributed to the nerve cells of the central nervous system through endovascular cuffs. The meningeal distribution of the pathologic lesions in the central nervous system in 21 cases of tsutsugamushi fever (scrub typhus) was recently described by Weil and Haymaker.1 They showed the pronounced cellular infiltration of the leptomeninges, perivascular spaces and choroid plexuses. Most of the reactive cells were histiocytes, together with some lymphocytes, plasma cells and other cells dislocated from the cortex. Nodules of microglia, which probably marked the earlier vascular invasion of the cerebral cortex, were illustrated. The present study was undertaken in order to show by a

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