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February 23, 1946


JAMA. 1946;130(8):496-497. doi:10.1001/jama.1946.02870080030012

In 1935 Day and his associates1 of the University of Arkansas reported that young rhesus monkeys given a diet consisting of casein, polished rice, whole wheat, salt mixture, cod liver oil and ascorbic acid develop a syndrome characterized by anemia, leukopenia, loss of weight, diarrhea and ulceration of the gums. Death usually occurs between the twenty-sixth and the one hundredth day. Supplementation of this diet with riboflavin, nicotinic acid or thiamine hydrochloride, given either alone or in combination, does not prevent the development of this lethal deficiency disease. If the daily deficiency diet is supplemented with either 10 Gm. of dried brewers' yeast or 2 Gm. of liver extract, however, normal body growth and a normal blood picture are maintained over a long period. From these experiments it seemed that yeast and liver extract contain an unknown substance essential to the nutrition of monkeys. For this unknown nutritional factor

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