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September 27, 1924


JAMA. 1924;83(13):1002-1003. doi:10.1001/jama.1924.02660130042016

The question whether, and to what extent, the results obtained with physiologic experiments on one species are applicable to the conditions in others, and particularly in man, is continually being raised. McCarrison5 has referred, for example, to the general impression that the polyneuritis that is produced by feeding pigeons on polished rice is the same condition as beriberi. In his opinion, this is not the case, for beriberi in man is characterized by cardiac enlargement, which is as important as the polyneuritic symptoms; whereas, in polyneuritis columbarum there is an atrophy of the heart.6

There is an almost cynical tendency in certain quarters to minimize the value of animal experimentation for the human clinic. Sometimes, this derogatory attitude is extremely discouraging to investigations, particularly when it concerns fields of study in which progress would be extremely limited if recourse could not be had to the experimental animal. Progress