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March 6, 1943


JAMA. 1943;121(10):763-764. doi:10.1001/jama.1943.02840100049014

The usefulness of chemotherapy in the treatment of some infectious diseases has strengthened the belief that chemical compounds may yet be found which will effectively combat the tubercle bacillus. The development of the sulfonamides has increased the fervor of those who seek such chemical weapons.

In 1938 sulfanilamide itself was found to exert an inhibitory effect on the development of tuberculosis in the highly susceptible guinea pig.1 The drug did not prevent completely the growth of the bacilli, but fewer organisms and less extensive lesions were observed in the treated animals. Toxic doses of the chemical were required to achieve this result. The sulfone promin2 has also been reported to have a notable inhibitory effect on the course of the disease in guinea pigs.3 In the meantime a number of sulfonamides and related compounds have been studied with regard to their effect in experimental tuberculosis.

A recent