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October 1930


Author Affiliations

Ward Fellow in Ophthalmology CHICAGO

From the Department of Ophthalmology, Northwestern University Medical School.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1930;4(4):468-475. doi:10.1001/archopht.1930.00810120026002

Since the description by Halberstaedter and Prowazek,1 in 1907, of peculiar bodies in the epithelial cells in cases of trachoma, an extensive literature has grown up on the question of the etiologic relation of these bodies to trachoma. Halberstaedter believed they represented a living parasite, the cause of trachoma, and called them Chlamydozoa, or mantle protozoans. This observation was soon confirmed by many observers. Similar bodies were found in other diseases of unknown origin ; in scarlet fever by Mallory,2 in varicella by Gins,3 and in other diseases.4 They were regarded as either living pathogenic organisms or as the reaction products of the cells to invisible organisms or viruses. The first evidence casting doubt on the specificity of such bodies for trachoma was the report of their presence in other diseases, some of known bacterial origin. Stargardt and Heymann5 reported finding identical bodies in conjunctivitis of

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