For more than a decade the antineuritic principle has been designated as vitamin B, but developments of the past two years have imparted to the latter term an ambiguity that has led to much perplexity. Not only is the chemical nature of vitamin B still unknown, but just what should be included under the term has become largely a matter of individual preference or persuasion. It is not without interest to trace the varied changes which the concept of this vitamin has undergone. What was originally the antineuritic substance of Eijkman and Funk,1 which was a specific for the cure of polyneuritis in pigeons, and what was the independently discovered water-soluble B of McCollum,2 which was demonstrated to be necessary for growth in the rat, became merged into the substance vitamin B,3 following the demonstration that those natural foods curing polyneuritis likewise promoted growth in animals.4
KRUSE HD, McCOLLUM EV. REVIEW OF RECENT STUDIES ON THE ANTINEURITIC VITAMIN: ITS CHEMICAL AND PHYSIOLOGIC PROPERTIES, AND THE EFFECTS OF ITS DEPRIVATION ON THE ANIMAL BODY. JAMA. 1932;98(25):2201–2208. doi:10.1001/jama.1932.27320510004008
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