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September 25, 1937


JAMA. 1937;109(13):1044-1045. doi:10.1001/jama.1937.02780390046018

Conjunctival scrapings from trachoma patients are noninfectious for dogs, rabbits, guinea-pigs, rats or other laboratory animals. Four years ago, however, Julianelle1 discovered that such conjunctival material causes a folliculosis if instilled into the eyes of monkeys. This experimental folliculosis usually lasts less than a year, though a few cases are on record in which the infection persisted for from two to three years in monkeys. Julianelle found that only about half of the cases of human trachoma are thus transferable and that approximately half of the monkeys are resistant to this experimental infection. On recovery from the experimental disease there is no demonstrable acquired antitrachoma immunity in the monkeys.

Hetler and James2 subsequently found that monkeys maintained on diets deficient in vitamin A, on inadequate proteins or on other food deficiencies are not more susceptible than normal monkeys to this experimental eye infection. In fact, their data suggest