The great desirability of reaching an early diagnosis in tuberculous infection has led to much work being done in laboratories in the search for some test which would make such a diagnosis possible, with the result that the various tuberculin reactions were discovered, as well as other methods, as the serum skin reaction of Bronfenbrenner.1 All of these diagnostic methods, however, have proved more or less unsatisfactory in thes differentiation of active and inactive tuberculosis and a criterion of cure.
As early as 1910, Ruppel and Rickmann2 made use of complement fixation in the diagnosis of tuberculosis in cattle, using old tuberculin as an antigen, and obtained positive results only in tuberculous animals, although no fixation occurred in some known to be tuberculous. Stimulated by this work, numerous investigators, notably Caulfield and Beatty,3 Calmette and Massol,4 and Hammer,5 demonstrated that complement fixation could be obtained
CRAIG CF. THE COMPLEMENT FIXATION TEST IN THE DIAGNOSIS OF TUBERCULOSIS. JAMA. 1917;LXVIII(10):773–776. doi:10.1001/jama.1917.04270030105012
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