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October 26, 1957


JAMA. 1957;165(8):1075. doi:10.1001/jama.1957.02980260161021

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To the Editor:—  The most characteristic differences between homologous serum jaundice and natural hepatitis are (1) that the former is transmitted by inoculation rather than through the gastrointestinal tract and (2) that the marked difference in incubation period, namely, from 60 to 180 days for the former, and only 15 to 30 days for the latter. It has generally been assumed that two different strains of virus are responsible for the two types of hepatitis, virus IH or A causing the natural disease and virus SH or B responsible for homologous serum jaundice. This interpretation fails to explain how homologous serum jaundice arose in the first place, and it leaves only a vague idea of what might happen were an individual who has just recovered from natural hepatitis used as a blood donor. The purpose of this communication is to suggest an alternative explanation.According to the hypothesis which we

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