Tognotti, Eugenia (2011) The Dawn of medical microbiology: germ hunters and the discovery of the cause of cholera. Journal of Medical Microbiology, Vol. 60 (4), p. 555-558. eISSN 1473-5644. Article.
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In the early history of Medical Microbiology, investigations into the causes of cholera played an essential role not recognized yet by historians of Medicine. The shocking arrival of the 'nineteenth century plague', which had never appeared in Europe prior to the Second Pandemic in 1830, fuelled the debate on the cause of the disease and the discussion on its contagiousness, galvanising the researches, as has always happened in every age for the most feared diseases. Studies and investigations greatly contributed to the displacement of the old 'miasmatic theory', which dominated Western medicine, and to the wide acceptance of the germ theory. This article seeks to fill this gap by describing and interpreting the steps in the transition towards the foundation of modern Microbiology and its modern branches.
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