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26 August 2014
Explained Mysteries
Charles Richet was a Parisian physiologist, who was born on this day in 1850. There scarcely seems an area of science – actually, life in general – that he didn’t delve into. His research roved between disciplines and interests, from hydrochloric acid in gastric juices to aviation, from heat regulation in mammals to spiritualism. But it was for his work on anaphylaxis that he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1913. Anaphylaxis is a massive, life-threatening allergic reaction, which occurs when the immune system overreacts to an otherwise harmless substance – like a peanut. Richet injected poison from the Portuguese man-of-war jellyfish into dogs on two occasions. He found that dogs that survived the first injection without any distress, when given a second injection three weeks later, had a violent reaction and died within 25 minutes. His work explained a host of previously misunderstood cases of intoxication and sudden death.
Written by Nick Kennedy
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Image by Agence de presse MeurisseBibliothèque nationale de FranceOriginally published under a Creative Commons Licence (BY 4.0)
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You can also follow BPoD on Twitter and Facebook

bpod-mrc:

26 August 2014

Explained Mysteries

Charles Richet was a Parisian physiologist, who was born on this day in 1850. There scarcely seems an area of science – actually, life in general – that he didn’t delve into. His research roved between disciplines and interests, from hydrochloric acid in gastric juices to aviation, from heat regulation in mammals to spiritualism. But it was for his work on anaphylaxis that he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1913. Anaphylaxis is a massive, life-threatening allergic reaction, which occurs when the immune system overreacts to an otherwise harmless substance – like a peanut. Richet injected poison from the Portuguese man-of-war jellyfish into dogs on two occasions. He found that dogs that survived the first injection without any distress, when given a second injection three weeks later, had a violent reaction and died within 25 minutes. His work explained a host of previously misunderstood cases of intoxication and sudden death.

Written by Nick Kennedy

Image by Agence de presse Meurisse
Bibliothèque nationale de France
Originally published under a Creative Commons Licence (BY 4.0)

You can also follow BPoD on Twitter and Facebook