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May 10, 1952


Author Affiliations

Department of Surgery, Northwestern University Medical School Chicago.

JAMA. 1952;149(2):186-187. doi:10.1001/jama.1952.02930190088025

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To the Editor:—  A letter published in The Journal, March 29, 1952, on lysozyme and ulcerative colitis aroused my interest. I agree with the author in that lysozyme probably does not play an etiologically significant role in ulcerative colitis; however, this assumption has not yet been conclusively demonstrated. The results obtained in the cauterization experiments lack statistical significance with respect to increased lysozyme titers. Further, the method used to determine lysozyme in these cauterization experiments as well as in most lysozyme studies of ulcerative colitis employs arbitrary lysozyme units varying in definition from investigator to investigator. A comparison of results between different laboratories is impossible. The method used is indicative of a rather wide range in the amount of lysozyme present. It would have been far better to measure lysozyme quantitatively in metric units (micrograms) as is accomplished by the method of Smolelis and Hartsell (J. Bact.58:732, 1949)

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