P. W. C.
The term pyrogen was applied by Burdon-Sanderson in 1875 to a hypothetical substance in bacteria-free extracts of putrid meat, which caused fever on injection into animals. Occasional similar observations attracted little attention until Wechselman (1911) showed that the febrile reactions following the administration of solutions of arsphenamine were due to contamination of the distilled water, presumably bacterial. They could be avoided by the use of water sterilized immediately after distillation.
This aroused widespread interest, and it was soon shown that a similar mechanism was involved in the reactions following injection of many other substances, including sodium chloride, glucose, immune sera,
C. PW. PYROGENS. Ann Intern Med. ;34:816–819. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-34-3-816
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1951;34(3):816-819.
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