Medicine: The Case of the Vanishing Virus

Many doctors believe that the common cold is caused by a virus. Dr. Leon T. Atlas of the U.S. Public Health Service has been so sure of it that since 1947 he has been growing a sub-microscopic bug that seemed to be the guilty party. At Bethesda, Md. he nurtured his virus first in the noses of willing victims, then in hen's eggs. The strain, known as MRI, be came the world's No. 1 biological curiosity.

Last week Dr. Atlas sadly announced that his virus had flown the coop. When, where or just how it...

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