JAMA 100 Years Ago Section Editor: Jennifer
Reiling, Assistant Editor.
The repeated experiments of an English investigator who is said to have
produced something like living forms by the action of radium on sterilized
bouillon do not appear to us to deserve the importance attributed to them
in the public press and elsewhere. It is unfortunate in some respects for
the claim that spontaneous generation is possible that all experiments in
this line deserving of any consideration whatever are made with already organized
matter. The present case is no exception. It is not claimed, moreover, that
life has been actually produced, but only that something resembling it or
suggesting it resulted in the course of experiments. Radium is a powerful
agent in many ways, and it is not remarkable that it can cause changes in
even dead organized matter that may at first sight or in some ways simulate
SPONTANEOUS GENERATION. JAMA. 2005;294(2):260. doi:https://doi.org/10.1001/jama.294.2.260-c
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