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Journal articles

Auguste Trillat : Epidémiologie et immunologie de guerre

Abstract : In the second half of the nineteenth century, the French chemist, engineer and biologist Auguste Trillat patented the now well-known formol. During his quite successful scientific and industrial career, he came to play important parts in the French political and scientific framework of the beginning of the twentieth century, when hygienism was with its apogee. In 1905, A. Trillat became head of the Pasteur Institute's applied hygiene research department, in Paris. His main engineering activities consisted in producing chemical disinfection devices. His concern for hygiene, which contributed to a great extent to his success, led him to create an original epidemiological theory: the condensation cores theory. He claimed that microbial agents could behave as cores of micro droplets, and that this property enhanced the propagation of diseases through air. This theory and his studies on the dynamics of epidemics led him to improve the methods of epidemiology, by showing that various parameters, among which but not exclusively the pathogenic properties of the microbial agents themselves, had to be taken into account in order to understand the course of an epidemic, its seriousness and extension. His theory's success and his technical devices led Trillat to play a central part, after World War I, in the creation and development of the first French biological and chemical weapons state program.
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Contributor : Etienne Aucouturier Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Thursday, February 20, 2014 - 4:47:11 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, April 28, 2021 - 9:45:38 PM


  • HAL Id : halshs-00950073, version 1


Etienne Aucouturier. Auguste Trillat : Epidémiologie et immunologie de guerre. Revue d'Histoire des Sciences, Armand Colin 2014, 67 (1), pp.111-146. ⟨halshs-00950073⟩



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