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January 20, 1962


JAMA. 1962;179(3):220. doi:10.1001/jama.1962.03050030034008

An article in this issue of The Journal (p. 191) considers 2 radiation accidents that were in some ways similar. Emphasis is placed on the attempt to use marrow-graft therapy in the Yugoslavian accident victims. The view is expressed that a successful temporary graft was probably achieved. Opinions differ, however, and 2 factors make it difficult to determine the validity of this conclusion: the radiation doses could not be measured with great accuracy, and the marrow was given rather late, when spontaneous recovery might have been about to occur. Whether or not a true homologus graft was obtained may remain controversial, but there is no doubt that this was a historic trial of a new form of therapy.

The attempt to use marrow therapy was based on the important animal experiments that have shown the feasibility of such treatment. The animal studies have opened up possibilities of important clinical progress