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  1. H Holzel1
  1. 1Department of Microbiology, Hospital for Sick Children, Great Ormond Street, London WC1, UK

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    Leading the way as the first article in the first issue of JCP in 1947, Bedson wrote a magnificent review of the laboratory diagnosis of virus infections of man.1 He showed a formidable understanding of the then current situation, stating that it was still impossible to say whether viruses were living microorganisms or not. He highlighted the doubt that all the agents grouped together as viruses were “of the same nature.” How right he was. The major group of agents he discussed were the so called large viruses. His descriptions of the clinical picture and means of investigating the “viral causes” of trachoma inclusion conjunctivitis, lymphogranuloma venereum, and psittacosis were so well observed that they remain true today.

    Bedson discussed the different means of viral diagnosis available in 1947. He described the use of specific histological change, virus isolation by use of eggs or animal inoculation, for example the use of monkeys as …

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