Areas of rabbit skin previously rendered hyperplastic with turpentine were scarified, inoculated with the Shope papilloma virus, and covered with a dressing that contained 20-methylcholanthrene (MC) or 9:10-dimethyl-1:2-benzanthracene (9:10). The dressing was left on until healing had been well completed, a matter of 5 to 7 days. The papillomas which subsequently arose often appeared later, were fewer, and remained less vigorous than those due to the action of virus alone, but throughout several months they appeared to differ from these in no other ways. Then, more or less abruptly, the large majority became carcinomatous, frequently at several situations, whereas with few exceptions the control growths underwent no such alteration. The cancers were of the sorts ordinarily deriving, by secondary change, from epidermal cells infected with the virus.

Collateral data have made plain that the hydrocarbons acted in their carcinogenic capacity to bring on the cancers. Indeed in control tests 9: 10 sometimes conferred latent neoplastic potentialities on uninoculated epidermis exposed to it while healing after scarification, a fact disclosed months later by painting these expanses with chloroform until hyperplasia occurred. Under the promoting influence of this agent papillomas formed which had the distinctive morphology of those induced by the chemical carcinogens.

So strong and enduring were the effects of MC and 9:10 as to cause cancers to arise from many virus papillomas which were retrogressing after months of proliferation, that is to say under circumstances ordinarily unfavorable to malignant change.

The facts justify the conclusion that the virus and the hydrocarbons acted jointly and in their carcinogenic capacities.

This content is only available as a PDF.