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March 1955

Fiftieth Anniversary of the Discovery of the Spirochaeta Pallida

Author Affiliations

Springfield, Mass

From the Department of Dermatology, Boston University School of Medicine.

AMA Arch Derm. 1955;71(3):289-292. doi:10.1001/archderm.1955.01540270001001

On March 3, 1955, we pay tribute to the memory of one who has made a vital contribution to science. When Fritz Schaudinn made his remarkable discovery of the Spirochaeta pallida (Treponema pallidum) he opened up a whole new approach to research in syphilis. In the light of its significance it may be well to review briefly the history of the S. pallida.

Dr. John Siegel, an assistant at the Institute of Zoology of the University of Berlin, on Feb. 2, 1905, submitted through the Director of the Institute, Prof. Franz E. Schulze, a report to the Prussian Academy of Sciences in which he stated that he found in lesions of primary syphilis, in syphilitic condylomas, and in the blood of persons with syphilis protozoa similar to those he had previously described for scarlatina, smallpox, and foot-and-mouth disease. He also found these organisms, which he

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