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April 22, 1905

Special ArticleIMMUNITY.

JAMA. 1905;XLIV(16):1277-1280. doi:10.1001/jama.1905.02500430041002

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THE BACTERICIDAL PROPERTY OF SERUMS.  There are two theories of note which concern the ability of the body to destroy bacteria. One of these is the phagocytic theory of Metchnikoff, according to which micro-organisms can not be destroyed with out the direct or indirect participation of the phagocytic cells; this is the cellular theory. The second, the humoral theory, supposes that the power resides in the fluids of the body alone; in its improved form it now holds that antibacterial immunity should be considered cellulo-humoral, and that whatever bactericidal power the body fluids have is derived primarily from the body cells. Many who appreciate the action of the serum, however, also believe that phagocytic cells may take up and, in certain instances, destroy micro-organisms; this combined view seems best to fit the facts as known at present.Antibacterial, bactericidal and bacteriolytic are three terms which are used in a

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