Chemistry plays an ever-increasing rôle in the practice of medicine; in the field of metabolism it is the alpha and omega. Medical chemistry deals largely with studies of body fluids and gases. The urine, because of its accessibility, was the first to be subjected to investigation, while the cerebrospinal fluid, because of its inaccessibility, has received relatively little attention to date.
Although chemical changes undoubtedly do accompany infectious and protozoal diseases, the paucity of information concerning the nature of chemical changes in infections, and the complex nature of the proteins themselves, have barred, to a large extent, direct chemical approach to the study of infection. As a result, progress has come along other and indirect lines, namely, through the development of immunology.
Because of the frequent involvement of the central nervous system in syphilis, and because of the relatively simple chemical character of cerebrospinal fluid, it would appear probable that