The earliest specific remedies, quinine, mercury, antimony and arsphenamine, Woodward1 points out, were effective chiefly against the larger infectious agents, the protozoa and the spirochetes. The introduction of the sulfonamide drugs extended the field of specific medication to include infections caused by bacteria of the gram-positive type and some of the antibiotics, proved effective against the gram-negative group of bacilli as well. Streptomycin is effective against a number of the gram-negative organisms and against certain clinical types of tuberculosis. Chloramphenicol and aureomycin, two antibiotics introduced most recently, appear to be highly specific against many members of the rickettsial group and against some of the viral-like agents of disease.
The effectiveness of chloramphenicol, isolated by Burkholder from an actinomycete, Streptomyces venezuelae, and prepared as a crystalline compound by Ehrlich and his co-workers,2 was demonstrated in rickettsial and psittacosis infection of chick embryos and mice. The brucellae, the salmonellae and