Math 210G Mathematics Appreciation Dr. Joe Lakey. website: http://www.math.nmsu.edu/~jlakey/home.html phone : 505-646-2417 office: Science Hall 230. Theories of disease. Ancient historical view: spontaneous generation
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office: Science Hall 230
Avicenna (1020 AD) : bodily secretion contaminated by foul foreign earthly bodies before being infected; contagious nature of tuberculosis/infectious diseases; introduced quarantine
Girolamo Fracastoro (1546): epidemics caused by “transferable seedlike entities” direct or indirect contact OR long distances.
Ignaz Semmelweis (1818-1865) Hungarian obstetrician Vienna's Allgemeines Krankenhaus in 1847,
…under a microscope
On September 17, 1683, Leeuwenhoek wrote to Royal Society,
"a little white matter, which is as thick as if 'twere batter."
Repeated observations on … presumably wife and daughter…,
and on two old men who had never cleaned their teeth
… "I then most always saw, with great wonder, that in the said matter there were many very little living animalcules, very prettily a-moving. … The biggest sort. . . had a very strong and swift motion, and shot through the water (or spittle) like a pike does through the water. The second sort. . . oft-times spun round like a top. . . and these were far more in number."
… the Society appointed two scientists - Nehemiah Grew, the plant anatomist and Robert Hooke, the microscopist. First time they failed, casting doubts on his report. However, Hooke again tried using a microscope with 330 X (power of magnification) and confirmed Leeuwenhoek’s success. Both scientists confirmed that their observations were similar to those described in the letters by Leeuwenhoek.
Now, the Royal Society accepted Leeuwenhoek as scientist and declared him as the discoverer of bacteria.
Pasteur: could not find “the germ” some diseases, such as rabies (and common cold, mumps, measles and polio)
Largest viruses ~ 1/10 typical bacteria ~ 0.2–2.0 µm