A survey of inbred strains of mice was made to determine whether the phenomenon of dermal hemorrhagic necrosis, as described in rabbits by Shwartzman, could be elicited in mice by bacterial polysaccharide preparations of demonstrated activity in rabbits. The polysaccharide preparations used were obtained from cultures of S. marcescens, S. typhosa, Ps. aeruginosa, and H. pertussis.
Ten of the strains tested were unreactive. Three strains of mice and one F1 hybrid subline developed a hemorrhagic lesion at the site of injection of a single, relatively high intradermal dose of polysaccharide. Some increase in incidence of hemorrhagic lesions was obtained when the intradermal dose was followed in 24 hours by an intravenous injection. In the gross and microscopically, the skin lesion produced in mice resembled the Shwartzman reaction in rabbits.
An adrenergic blocking agent, SY-28, and an anticoagulant drug, coumadin, both of which block the dermal Shwartzman reaction in rabbits, also blocked the hemorrhagic skin reaction in mice.