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November 15, 1941


Author Affiliations

Columbia University Department of Ophthalmology Research, New York.

JAMA. 1941;117(20):1728. doi:10.1001/jama.1941.02820460066023

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To the Editor:—  The editorial on Duran-Reynals "spreading factor" (The Journal, September 27, p. 1099) might be misleading in regard to the history of this subject.The mucopolysaccharide of vitreous humor was isolated and characterized by Meyer and Palmer in 1936 (J. Biol. Chem.114:689 [July] 1936) and called hyaluronic acid. The mucopolysaccharide of synovial fluid likewise was isolated and characterized as hyaluronic acid in my laboratory (Science88:129 [Aug. 5] 1938; J. Biol. Chem.128:319 [April] 1939).Enzymes of bacterial and animal origin, which hydrolyzed specifically hyaluronic acid and depolymerized viscous fluids containing hyaluronic acid as their viscous components, were also first demonstrated by us before the correlation between "spreading factor" and hyaluronidase was recognized by Chain and Duthie in their remarkable paper (Proc. Soc. Exper. Biol. & Med.34:816 [June] 1936; J. Biol. Chem.118:71 [March] 1937; J. Exper. Med.71:137 [Feb.]

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