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June 13, 1931

LOSS OF VIRICIDAL PROPERTY IN SERUMS FROM PATIENTS WITH HERPES AND ENCEPHALITIS

Author Affiliations

NEW YORK
From the Department of Bacteriology, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons.

JAMA. 1931;96(24):2028-2029. doi:10.1001/jama.1931.02720500022008
Abstract

We1 have elsewhere discussed the possible relationship that may exist between the relatively common skin disease known as herpes simplex and human epidemic encephalitis. Herpes simplex is definitely due to a filtrable virus that produces either a characteristic skin eruption or a fatal encephalitis in rabbits and in guinea-pigs. Herpes virus has rarely been found in the brain of human beings dead of encephalitis, and its presence there in those exceptional instances described by Levaditi and Harvier,2 Doerr and Schnabel,3 Perdrau4 and others might well be due to the secondary invasion of a virus that is recognized to be widely distributed under normal conditions. On the other hand, the absence of the virus in the many instances of encephalitis in which it was sought may be due to a

process of autosterilization, to the fact that most brains were not examined during the acute phase of

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