For some twenty-five years the Bordet-Gengou bacillus has been widely accepted as the etiologic agent in pertussis. The organism has been grown, often in pure culture, from the plug of mucus brought up after a paroxysm of coughing by patients suffering from the disease. The causal relationship of this bacillus has, moreover, been supported by serologic evidence, for the complement fixation reaction can be demonstrated in nearly all cases by the end of the second week.1 Vaccines have been prepared and some measure of success has been claimed for them.2
Recent observations challenge the theory that Bacillus pertussis is actually the cause of whooping cough. McCordock3 of the department of pathology at the Washington University School of Medicine has presented evidence that points to the existence of a filtrable virus in this infection. Intranuclear inclusion bodies, which are associated with many virus diseases, have been found by
IS WHOOPING COUGH DUE TO A FILTRABLE VIRUS? JAMA. 1932;99(22):1866. doi:10.1001/jama.1932.02740740050017
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