Medicine: Tears, Sweat & Spit

Will the baby be a boy or a girl? A biochemist at Chicago's Loyola University, Gustav William Rapp, thinks he can find the answer, nine times out of ten, and three to four months before birth. The answer, he believes, is in the mother's saliva.

Dr. Rapp got the idea in a roundabout way from Dr. Garwood Richardson's simple urine test for pregnancy (TIME, May 2, 1949). Rapp decided to see whether any secretions besides urine showed pregnancy. He tried tears and sweat, found them no good. Saliva seemed to be a flop, too: half the results were negative, even with women...

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