ASPIRATION of peanut kernels has been known for many years to produce a morbidity and mortality greater than that of many other similar agents.1 In 1930, Heatly and Clausen2 observed that simple ether extracts of roasted peanuts produced death in rabbits within seventy-two hours when injected intratracheally in amounts of 2 cc. Further investigation by these authors revealed the harmful fraction to be present in the unsaturated fatty acid of the oil extracted in this manner. However, Richards3 reported that the clinical course of patients who aspirated peanut kernels failed to verify the severely toxic manifestations previously reported. Pinkerton4 showed that simple neutral vegetable oils (iodized sesame seed and poppyseed oil and olive oil) produced practically no reaction and did not appear to injure the lungs in any way.
Thus, I became interested in studying the pathogenesis and mortality from peanut oil in lungs of experimental
GOBBEL WG. EXPERIMENTAL PEANUT OIL PNEUMONIA IN RABBITS. Am J Dis Child. 1949;77(2):175–184. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1949.02030040184003
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