a story lives forever
Sign in
Form submission failed!

Stay signed in

Recover your password?
Form submission failed!

Web of Stories Ltd would like to keep you informed about our products and services.

Please tick here if you would like us to keep you informed about our products and services.

I have read and accepted the Terms & Conditions.

Please note: Your email and any private information provided at registration will not be passed on to other individuals or organisations without your specific approval.

Video URL

You must be registered to use this feature. Sign in or register.


Experimenting with different tissue culture media


A mystery organism
Leonard Hayflick Scientist
Comments (0) Please sign in or register to add comments

And then Bob told me that was very important. He said, 'The mystery is that this organism and the disease itself seems to be amenable to treatment with broad spectrum antibiotics.' Well, that was known, and still is known, not to be a possibility with viruses. Viruses simply are not affected by any known antibiotic. They're susceptible to some chemical agents, but not to the then known broad spectrum antibiotics and that was essential. Well, it occurred to me when he said that, and of course he was talking about a pneumonia, that my knowledge of mycoplasmology was such that I knew as everybody in the field knew that this class of organisms produced pneumonias in lower animals, in mice, rats, pigs, chickens, turkeys, etc. And I said to Bob, 'Well, have you and Monroe Eaton considered – and others working in the field, there are a few more – considered the PPLO which they were known then?' And Bob said, 'PPLO, what are they?' Well, as he educated me about Eaton agent pneumonia, I then educated him about PPLOs in the next ten minutes and we came to the obvious conclusion. Bob would send me embryonated egg yolk in which this hypothetical organism was to grow... was growing and I would test it for mycoplasmas.

Leonard Hayflick (b. 1928), the recipient of several research prizes and awards, including the 1991 Sandoz Prize for Gerontological Research, is known for his research in cell biology, virus vaccine development, and mycoplasmology. He also has studied the ageing process for more than thirty years. Hayflick is known for discovering that human cells divide for a limited number of times in vitro (refuting the contention by Alexis Carrel that normal body cells are immortal), which is known as the Hayflick limit, as well as developing the first normal human diploid cell strains for studies on human ageing and for research use throughout the world. He also made the first oral polio vaccine produced in a continuously propogated cell strain - work which contributed to significant virus vaccine development.

Listeners: Christopher Sykes

Christopher Sykes is a London-based television producer and director who has made a number of documentary films for BBC TV, Channel 4 and PBS.

Tags: Robert Chanock, Monroe Eaton

Duration: 1 minute, 45 seconds

Date story recorded: July 2011

Date story went live: 08 August 2012