The recent report of Morton and collaborators1 dealing with the purported lack of germicidal action of organomercurial coumpounds prompts the submission of this brief report. It is neither supportive nor contradictory of the Morton publication; rather, it is intende[ill] to point out the manner in which the outcome of experiments of this sort is influenced by. some of the conditions on the laboratory bench which are frequently given little consideration by laboratorians and readers alike.
To judge from the results observed during the past several years in experiments in the laboratory with organomercurial agents (and other compounds of the germicide-antisepticdisinfectant group), sulfonamide drugs and various antibiotics in rather large numbers, three main conditions of testing may affect the outcome of the tests considerably. These are temperature, time and quantity of bacteria. Chick and Martin2 some forty years ago dealt with such varying conditions, but lately they have not
POWELL HM. ANTIBACTERIAL ACTION OF "MERTHIOLATE" AGAINST HEMOLYTIC STREPTOCOCCI. JAMA. 1948;137(10):862-866. doi:10.1001/jama.1948.82890440006008a