Variations are described which have from time to time occurred in the structure and behavior of a transplantable, spindle-celled sarcoma of the fowl, a growth caused, as elsewhere shown, by a filterable agent. Of late the growth has frequently given rise to fatal hemorrhages from its substance. In some of the recent, rapidly growing tumors the cells have tended to be spherical, showing only a very tardy and imperfect differentiation to the spindle form. A giant-celled form of the growth is sometimes met with. Despite their diversity the tumors grade into one another and in the final analysis are all to be considered as spindle-celled sarcomata. Attempts to obtain an action of the etiological agent upon cells other than those it usually affects have failed, as have attempts to bring about changes in the histology of the sarcomata by attenuating the agent.
Some of the lesser morphological variations in the sarcoma are undoubtedly due to local conditions in the host, and of the more important changes some have been associated with an increase in the growth's malignancy. For others the determining conditions have yet to be discovered. On the whole the variations described are not more marked than those occasionally manifested by the transplantable mammalian tumors, and traceable to the changes in a single strain of tumor cells during their propagation in successive hosts. In mammals the ultimate reason for these changes is not known. In the case of the chicken tumor some of them are undoubtedly the expression of changes in the growth's causative agent.