Section 56
Chapter 55,725

Seroimmunological studies by Dr Hideyo Noguchi - introduction and illustration of his seroimmunological research, with a connection to recent seroimmunology

Yoshida, H.; Noguchi, H.

Rinsho Byori. Japanese Journal of Clinical Pathology 57(12): 1200-1208


ISSN/ISBN: 0047-1860
PMID: 20077823
Accession: 055724191

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Dr. Hideyo Noguchi (Noguchi) is the most well-known scientist in Japanese history because of his eventful life and research on syphilis and yellow fever; however, details of his scientific research, especially in the seroimmunological field, performed in the USA have not been recognized. More than 200 papers were published, mostly in English, and about half of them were published in J. Exp. Medicine. Arbitrary evaluation was performed of his research, recognizing the value of his seroimmunological studies. In this lecture, the background at that time and a small part of the contents of 10 papers on serology and biochemistry are introduced and explained, in connection with recent seroimmunology: (1) On snake venom: In the first experiment, under the guidance of Drs. Flexner and Mitchel, many new findings were obtained regarding bacteriolysis, hemolysis, leucolysis, and the toxicity of venoms in relation to antibody and complement. Especially, the bacteriolytic activity of serum induced by venom was disclosed later to be caused by the activation of alternative pathway of complement by a factor termed cobra venom factor. (2) Heat-stable anticomplementary factor: Preheating sera produced an anticomplementary factor, termed protectin. (3) The pleurality of cytolysins (natural antibody) in sera not only of mammals but also of a reptile and an amphibian was identified. (4) Toxin-antitoxin reaction: One of the fundamental analyses of the antigen-antibody reaction. (5) Gel diffusion of antigen and antibody. (6) Various factors affecting the Wassermann reaction, in which the butyric acid method to detect globulin was introduced. (7) A new and simple method for the serodiagnosis of syphilis. (8) A study of syphilis antigen, in which the antigenicity of acetone-soluble lipid was stressed. (9) Pure cultivation of Treponema pallidum. (10) Demonstration of T. pallidum in the brain. More than 40 papers on syphilis were published, for which he was nominated for the Nobel prize 3 times.

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