October 1940


Author Affiliations

Fellow in Medicine, the Mayo Foundation; ROCHESTER, MINN.

From the Rochester State Hospital and the Mayo Foundation.; From the Division of Biochemistry (Dr. Mason), the Mayo Clinic, and from the Departments of Medicine (Dr. Wilder) and of Neurology and Psychiatry (Dr. Smith), the Mayo Foundation.

Arch Intern Med (Chic). 1940;66(4):785-799. doi:10.1001/archinte.1940.00190160002001

Reports of controlled observations on induced thiamine (vitamin B1) deficiency in human beings have been few,1 and in only two of these reports1c,d has the restriction of vitamins been limited to thiamine. One of these studies1d was reported by three of us (Williams, Mason and Smith) in December 1939. In that study, 4 young women for twenty-one weeks received a diet which was more deficient in vitamin B1 than commonly is reported in association with the syndrome of beriberi. This diet was made adequate in vitamin A, ascorbic acid, proteins and minerals and in addition was supplemented with crystalline preparations of riboflavin and nicotinic acid. The delayed development of symptoms and failure of the subjects to show the classic signs of beriberi prompted repetition of the study with other subjects. Also it seemed desirable to provide more adequately for the factors of the vitamin B complex other than thiamine. For

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