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September 1, 1956


JAMA. 1956;162(1):34-37. doi:10.1001/jama.1956.72970180004010

The offensive potential of biological warfare has created public health problems that were not known 10 years ago. For example, the vulnerability of the human respiratory tract as an avenue for infectious aerosols1 dictates serious attention to the problems associated with the pathogenesis of diseases that can be produced by such means. It follows that the effectiveness of our antibiotics, vaccines, and toxoids will not be fully known until they are evaluated by respiratory challenge of animals or man. This is the most important thought that I wish to emphasize.

In the medical literature there are adequate reports of instances in which the number of organisms required to infect and the effectiveness of therapy in a given disease are significantly different when an animal is inoculated by different routes.2 For instance, infection of the lung with Streptococcus or with the anthrax bacillus is a much more severe disease