The present study was undertaken to determine whether any constant cultural or immunologic type of bacterium was associated with acute rheumatic fever. This disease presents a fairly typical clinical picture, consisting of an acute febrile condition, associated with polyarthritis, and a tendency to involvement of such serous surfaces as the endocardium, pericardium and pleura. Muscular tissues are also frequently involved, most noticeably the myocardium, in which a peculiar pathologic picture is commonly found in fatal cases. Certain symptoms of the disease, namely, the fever and polyarthritis, respond in a fairly characteristic manner to the administration of the salicylates in sufficient doses. It does not seem unreasonable, therefore, to suppose that the disease may be the result of the action of some definite pathogenic micro-organism.
The early contention of Achalme1 that the disease was due to a gram-negative anaerobic bacillus has been disproved. The next view was