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To the Editor:
—Dr. Hideyo Noguchi, in his article on serum diagnosis of syphilis under war conditions (The Journal, April 20, 1918, p. 1157), mentions that in strongly positive serums complement is fixed wholly in twenty minutes at 21 C., but that on account of weaker reactions the time for fixation should be prolonged to two hours. In recent experiments I have found that complement is completely fixed practically at once at room temperature. The results of a number of special tests indicate that in routine tests it probably is quite sufficient to allow the serum-complementantigen mixture to stand for ten minutes before adding corpuscles and amboceptor. This seems to be time enough even with weakly positive serums and spinal fluids. As I am unable to make comparative tests on a large scale, I hope that the possibility of shortening the time of the Wassermann reaction in the way indicated
Retinger JM. SERUM DIAGNOSIS OF SYPHILIS. JAMA. 1918;70(21):1562. doi:10.1001/jama.1918.02600210051025