Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Treating cows with Tuberculomucin

This is Harvest Festival at the family estate in Thalheim, lower Austria, 1929. Fritz Weleminsky stands, hat in hand, in the centre, along with his daughter Marianne and her two-year-old daughter Charlotte. Thalheim had been in his wife Jenny's family for a generation. The estate had a large herd of cows which were brought inside during the harsh winters, and as a result caught tuberculosis from being in close confinement. Bovine tuberculosis was very common. In 1890, for example, it was discovered that 87 per cent of Queen Victoria's cows were infected with the TB bacteria (Mycobacterium bovis). At Thalheim, over-wintered cows did not survive more than two years until Fritz treated them (as well as his human patients) with tuberculomucin, after which they recovered and went on producing milk.