Life Without Germs In a Laboratory (Nov, 1950)

Life Without Germs In a Laboratory
At the University of Notre Dame there are some laboratory animals living in a world apart—a world without germs. Their world consists of a giant tank, large enough to hold 1000 animals, which has been made completely germfree. Attendants and scientists who must enter the tank to feed and examine the animals do so by diving through a germicidal solution. They also wear plastic suits and masks which completely enclose their bodies. The scientists hope to discover how much longer the animals will live if they are kept in a germfree atmosphere.

6 comments
  1. mrchurchill109 says: January 23, 20084:49 am

    Uhhhhh…what about the internal flora in the animals’ GI tracts? Not seeing how this one could work…

  2. glindsey says: January 23, 20087:20 am

    SSSSHHHH! You’re destroying their Space Age Optimism!

  3. dculberson says: January 23, 200812:39 pm

    They are made to drink nothing but germicidal solution before being allowed into the lab. Turns out they don’t live all that long.

  4. Myles says: January 23, 200812:44 pm

    What might the purpose of this experiment have been? I really think some other useful experiment was going on the the magazine just made up a story that they thought would sound good to the readers.

  5. Binky, age 3 & 1/2 says: January 23, 20087:31 pm

    And the animals are still alive?

  6. Firebrand38 says: January 23, 20088:21 pm

    OK kids,gather round. The scientist who founded the Notre Dame program left and started his own facility to produce these animals. http://www.time.com/tim…

    Myles you are correct. Following the above link leads to an article with Dr Reyniers about why these animals were created.

    It’s a bit more involved than seeing how long we live without germs but the writer was probably limited to space and facing a deadline.

    There were a couple of government grants to see how infections developed in germ free animals as an analog to humans http://www.jimmunol.org…

    What happened to the Dr.can be found at http://www.rgicr.org/RG…

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