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November 1976

A Critical Decade in American Dermatologic Research—1920 to 1930

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Dermatology, State University of New York School of Medicine, Buffalo.

Arch Dermatol. 1976;112(ANIVERSARY):1671-1674. doi:10.1001/archderm.1976.01630360039011

During centennial and bicentennial years, there seems to be a natural tendency to reflect on the past and to reconstruct, to whatever extent we can, how we came to be what and where we are. But mere reminiscing is without utility unless it can influence, in some meaningful way, our present and future activities. To put it simply, the past is meant to be learned from.

Today our knowledge of the function of the skin and its components is vast. We are beginning to discover some of the factors that regulate the growth and differentiation of the epidermis; we understand how the glands of the skin function and are controlled; the biochemical complexities of melanin have been clarified; the biosynthesis of collagen and other connective tissue components has been extensively studied; and enormous progress has been made in our understanding of immunologic processes during the past decade. These advances are