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September 1948


Arch Ophthalmol. 1948;40(3):273-278. doi:10.1001/archopht.1948.00900030279004

EVER SINCE the discovery of cholinesterase by Loewi and Navratil1 in 1926, the number of experimental investigations concerning this vital enzyme has been almost legion. Cholinesterase is capable of converting acetylcholine into the relatively inactive choline and acetic acid. Consequently, it represents a new tool in the study of autonomic activities.

In the past twenty-two years the cholinesterase content of well nigh every tissue in the human and lower organisms has been noted. The tissues of the eye have not been neglected. Interestingly enough, it is concerning them that one of the few controversies exists.

Cholinesterase is not a difficult substance to work with. It is relatively stable. Vahlquist2 stated that blood plasma at room temperature in a sealed tube retains its cholinesterase activity for at least a week. Stedman3 stated that serum, if sterile, retains its cholinesterase activity for months. Recently, many new methods have been devised