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April 17, 1915

Ancylostoma, not Ankylostoma

Author Affiliations

Albany, N. Y.

JAMA. 1915;LXIV(16):1346. doi:10.1001/jama.1915.02570420064031

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To the Editor:  —The Current Comment "Ancylostoma, not Ankylostoma" (The Journal, March, 27, 1915, p. 1081), says: "We do not know what considerations induced the commission to choose the spelling 'ancylostoma,' which apparently also involves a change in pronunciation, but possibly the choice will illustrate the proverb, 'You may lead a horse to water but you cannot make him drink.' " I find that other medical journals have likewise criticized the opinions of the commission. The rules for nomenclature established by the International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature have no bearing on the etymological derivation of a name. It is the duty of the commission to determine the first name applied to a genus or species correctly described. The name does not have to be descriptive; nor does it matter how the name is spelled.Official names are of great help to scientists; it is only by their use that the various

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