Part 5: Why dig up age-old material?


Arvid Carlsson’s document of 1965 is soon 50 years old. Why dig up this age-old material?

I refer to it at this time because his invented story still lives and is being kept alive. He and professor Annica Dahlström revived it in 1986 Making Visible the Invisible, Discoveries in Pharmacology Vol. 3 pp.97–125, 1986 Elsevier, Amsterdam. Professor Dahlström presents their alleged invention anew on page xxviii in Dahlström, A.,  Nils-Åke Hillarp: The Life of a Great Scientist, Molecular Mechanisms of Neuronal Communication, Wenner-Gren International Series, Pergamon, 1995.

Still, in the year 2000 Carlsson presents the old myth, this time before an international forum, namely in his Nobel Laureate presentation. He does this by maintaining his story from 1965: purely chemical experiments preceded the creation of the fluorescence-microscopic method, that – in turn – emerged when Hillarp and I applied the chemical results on the iris and on mesentary tissues — this means Carlsson claims, that we created the entire method in single day.

The reality was this: In his doctoral thesis of 1946 Åke Hillarp had studied the the nerves of the iris and the peritoneum in rats. On an afternoon in August, 1961, Hillarp and I used our novel – but long since completed – method to study those same structures by using fluorescence microscopy.

The story continues… Part 6: Quotation From Nobel Presentation