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July 10, 1909


Author Affiliations

Professor of Nervous Diseases, Northwestern University Medical School CHICAGO

JAMA. 1909;LIII(2):97-105. doi:10.1001/jama.1909.92550020003002a

The physiology of the pituitary gland still presents many unsolved problems. Jakob Lewin1 in 1906 summarized the situation as follows:

For some (Roth, Widersheim, Corning, Strumpell) the hypophysis is merely a rudimentary organ which has no essential function. According to other authors (Schiff, Marinesco, Wolf, Gemelli) the function of the gland is essential to life. Regarding the character of the gland's function there is also divergent opinion. Wolf, for instance, believes that it is hemolytic, while Liegois insists that it is hematopoietic in action, and Oliver again insists that it regulates the blood pressure. The majority hold that the hypophysis is a ductless gland that has an influence over the nervous system, or has something to do with the red blood corpuscles, or finally that it neutralizes some substance harmful to the organism.

Paulesco, from experiments on dogs, also reaches the