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September 1962

Electron Microscope Studies on Viral Skin Lesions: A Simple and Rapid Method of Identifying Virus Particles

Author Affiliations


Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto and Division of Biological Research, The Ontario Cancer Institute.

Arch Dermatol. 1962;86(3):290-297. doi:10.1001/archderm.1962.01590090032010

By means of the electron microscope, it is possible to identify visually many different viruses, and one might expect that this instrument would be useful as a clinical tool for aiding the diagnosis of virus diseases. So far, its use for this purpose has been very limited, mainly because of the difficulty of preparing specimens in a form suitable for examination in the electron microscope. In principle, the thin sectioning technique which has been so successfully applied in recent years to the study of minute biological structures can be used to detect and identify viruses in infected cells. In practice, however, the method is time consuming and presents technical difficulties that make it of little value to the clinician. Examination of virus-containing extracts after shadow casting with heavy metals has been suggested by Blank and Rake1 as a means of diagnosis, and in fact, Nagler and Rake2 used

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