Medicine: Hope for Silicotics

Silicosis, the lung disease that miners get from prolonged exposure to quartz dust, has been as final for its victims as an amputation.

But in 1937, after five years of research, J. J. Denny, Drs. Wilmot Douglas Robson and Dudley Arthur Irwin, working for Ontario's Mclntyre-Porcupine (gold) Mines, found a strange treatment which worked on guinea pigs: fine aluminum dust. When inhaled, aluminum dust forms a jelly around the silica particles, making them harmless.

Last spring silicotics (there are about 110,000 in the U.S.) heard their first good news since mining began in the Stone Age—aluminum dust works on people, too. The Wall...

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