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Precipitin Tests with Phosphatide Fractions of Tubercle Bacilli *

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Abstract

PRECIPITIN TESTS WITH PHOSPHATIDE FRACTIONS OF TUBERCLE BACILLI* L. N. CLAIBORN AND H. C. FRANCIS Many types of precipitin test for tuberculosis based on the use of tuberculin and various extracts have been developed by pre- vious investigators. In general these tests have been unsatisfactory because of their lack of specificity. In 1929 Doan' reported a precipitin test for tuberculosis in which the phosphatide fraction isolated from the tubercle bacillus by Anderson2 was used. His results indicated that the test was of considerable diagnostic value. Employing essentially the method developed by Doan3, we have made a series of tests on material obtained from 233 patients. In this study, tests were made with phosphatide antigenic dilutions only; no antiphosphatide serum was used. The phosphatide frac- tions used were kindly supplied by the H. K. Mulford Company and were listed by them as follows: No. 47812 Phosphatid Human (1 % suspension) A3 No. 47813 Phosphatid Bovine (1 % suspension) A3 No. 51095 Phosphatid Avian (1 % suspension) A3 The technic employed was briefly as follows: The antigen, which was supplied in a I per cent suspension, was diluted with freshly distilled water, 1:10, 1:20, 1:40, etc., the highest dilution used being 1 :1280. Small tubes measuring approximately 6 cm. in length and 2 mm. inside diameter were used. These were made from clean glass tubing and discarded after use. Blood serum was used as the test material in most instances, but some spinal fluid and pleural exudate were also utilized. By means of capillary pipettes a quantity of the material to be tested sufficient to fill the tubes to one-fourth of their capacity was placed in each of the nine tubes used. An equal amount of the antigen (phosphatide fraction), using 1 per cent solution in the first tube, I:10 dilution in the second, etc., was then layered over the solution in each of the tubes. One control tube containing the material to be tested to which an equal amount of freshly distilled water had been ad

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