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May 12, 1945


JAMA. 1945;128(2):131. doi:10.1001/jama.1945.02860190067014

About three years ago it was shown by Foster and her associates1 of the University of Pennsylvania that the resistance of mice to poliomyelitis virus is increased as a result of thiamine deficiency and that a similar though less pronounced increase in antiviral resistance results from other forms of malnutrition. Similar results were reported by Rasmussen and his associates2 of the University of Wisconsin. On account of wartime interest in malnutritional immunity, Clark and his associates3 of the University of Wisconsin have attempted to confirm these seemingly paradoxical results on monkeys.

As a preliminary to the attempted confirmation the Wisconsin biochemist4 developed a synthetic diet for rhesus monkeys containing optimum amounts of all essential food elements. They found that the signs of mild thiamine deficiency in monkeys are cessation of normal growth, anorexia, apathy and an unkempt appearance. More serious thiamine deficiency is characterized by tremors,

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