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June 1935


Arch Ophthalmol. 1935;13(6):1018-1021. doi:10.1001/archopht.1935.00840060100008

In previous reports1 evidence was presented which indicated that trachoma is not a bacterial disease and which suggested that a filtrable virus is the etiologic agent. The nature of the Halberstaedter-Prowazek inclusion bodies,2 found in epithelial scrapings from patients with trachoma, was discussed in a recent report;1c on the basis of microscopic evidence, the conclusion was supported that the inclusion bodies of trachoma were intracellular colonies of a virus which might be the etiologic agent of the disease. The virus was found to be identical morphologically with the virus of inclusion blennorrhea3 and strikingly similar to the virus of psittacosis.4 Like these viruses it occurred in two phases: the large, initial body (Lindner) phase and the small, elementary body phase. By analogy it seemed logical to suppose that the elementary body phase would be the filtrable one. Experiments with suspensions of elementary bodies showed