In 1912 Underhill1 published his discovery of a severe form of renal degeneration or "nephritis" in rabbits and dogs produced by the subcutaneous administration of sodium tartrate. This publication was followed by three papers regarding experimental tartrate nephritis by F. P. Underhill, H. Gideon Wells and Samuel Gold-schmidt.2 Their observations are to the following effect:
Nephritis with impairment of renal secretory activity and extremely severe degeneration or necrosis of the convoluted tubules may be caused by the subcutaneous administration of less than 0.5 gm. of sodium tartrate to phloridzinized fasting rabbits weighing from 2,000 to 2,500 gm. The lesions seem to involve only the tubular epithelium, the glomerules being practically unaffected.
In similar manner nephritis may be caused by tartrate in somewhat larger doses when administered to fasting animals without phloridzin.
Rochelle salt administered by mouth to fasting animals causes nephritis: 8 gm. given to a 1,660-gm. rabbit