Timeline of pneumonia

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This is a timeline of pneumonia, attempting to describe important events in the history of the disease.

Big picture

Time period Development summary
19th century The 1870s and early 1880s mark the onset of the discovery of infectious agents of disease, whereas the late 1880s and early 1890s witness the beginning of the medical attack on such pathogens through applied humoral immunology.[1] During the late 1800s through the early 1900s, pneumonia stands as the leading cause of death due to infectious disease and the third leading cause of death overall.[2]
20th century Throughout the century, the use of antibiotics as a treatment strategy continues. However, widespread overuse of antibiotics would lead to the creation of penicillin-resistant strains of Streptococcus pneumoniae.[2] From 1915 to 1945, the chemical structure and antigenicity of the pneumococcal capsular polysaccharide, its association with virulence, and the role of bacterial polysaccharides in human disease are explained.[3] Up until the early 1940s, textbooks of medicine recognize that pneumonia could present only as lobar pneumonia or bronchopneumonia, with the small residuum dubbed as ‘‘unresolved’’.[4] The first vaccine is introduced in 1977. In the 1980s, the classification of pneumonia based on lists of different pathogens is abandoned in favour of a more practical classification that helps to guide investigation, management and therapy.[4]
21st century Today, pneumonia affects approximately 450 million people globally (7% of the population) and results in about 4 million deaths per year.[5][6] The World Health Organization estimates that one in three newborn infant deaths is due to pneumonia.[7]

Full timeline

Year Event type Details Location
1875 Scientific deveopment German-Swiss pathologist Edwin Klebs is the first to observe bacteria in the airways of persons having died of pneumonia.[8] Germany
1881 Scientific deveopment Bacterium Streptococcus pneumonia, one of the most common causes of pneumonia throughout the world, is discovered independently by French microbiologist Louis Pasteur, and American microbiologist George Miller Sternberg, after both identified lancet-shaped bacteria in saliva. It is named Microbe septicemique du salive by Pasteur and Micrococcus pasteuri by Sternberg.[9][10][11] France, United States
1883 Scientific deveopment Friedlander and Talamon first dscribe the association between the pneumococcus and lobar pneumonia.[3][12][13][14]
1884 Scientific development The gram stain is developed, putting an end to confusion between pneumococcal pneumonia with other types of pneumonia.[3]
1886 Scientific development The organism previously named by Pasteur and Sternberg is referred to as pneumococcus by German physician Albert Fraenkel because of its propensity to cause pulmonary disease.[9][15][9]
1892 Scientific development Canadian physician William Osler writes of pneumonia, "It is a self-limited disease, and has its course uninfluenced in any way by medicine".
1893 Scientific deveopment The first attempt to treat pneumococcal pneumonia with rabbit serum (generated through inoculating rabbits with pneumococci) takes place in Germany.[1] Germany
1911 Medical deveopment Efforts to develop effective pneumococcal vaccines begin.[3] Whole-cell pneumococcal vaccines are tested among gold miners of South Africa.[16][12] South Africa
1911 Scientific development Morganroth and Levy show that a quinine derivative, ethylhydrocupreine (also known as optochin), inhibits the growth of pneumococci but not of clinically related organisms.[9]
1913 Medical deveopment Antipneumococcal serum therapy becomes available, being able to reduce mortality from 25% to 7.5%, if given early in disease progression. However, this treatment method is slow, costly, and time-consuming at the time.[2]
1929 Scientific deveopment Scottish physician Alexander Fleming discovers the antibacterial properties of the fungus-derived substance that later comes to be called penicillin.[17][18][19][9] Unitd Kingdom
1920s Medical deveopment Type I specific antipneumococcal serotherapy proves efficacious in large hospitals of the United States.[1] United States
1928 Scientific development Scottish microbiologist Alexander Fleming, a Professor of Bacteriology at St Mary’s Hospital in London, discovers penicillin after sorting through some petri dishes containing a bacteria called staphylococcus, which causes boils, sore throats and abscesses. Flemming discovers killed baceria in one dish contaning a blob of mold on it.[20][21] United Kingdom
1939 Medical deveopment Antibacterial agent, sulfapyridine, the first effective antipneumococcal sulfonamide, is introduced in the United States, representing the emerging chemotherapeutic revolution as applied to pneumonia.[1][2][22][23][24] United States
1939 Scientific deveopment French-born American microbiologist René Dubos discovers the first naturally occurring antimicrobial compound with demonstrable activity in vitro against a bacterial pathogen. This compound is named gramicidin, with demonstrated activity against streptococcus pneumoniae.[9] United States
1940 Scientific development More than 80 serotypes of pneumococci are described by the time.[3][25][26][12]
1942 Medical deveopment Antibiotic penicillin begins to be used to treat infections.[27][2]
1947 Medical deveopment Kaufman demonstrates the safety and efficacy of 2-valent and 3-valent pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccines.[28]
Late 1960s Medical deveopment Efforts are again made to develop a polyvalent pneumococcal vaccine.[3]
1974 Scientific development Pneumococcus is given its present name, Streptococcus pneumoniae, primarily on the basis of its characteristic growth as chains of cocci in liquid media.[9][15]
1977 Medical deveopment The pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPV), a vaccine to protect against bacterial pneumonia, is first developed. However, this vaccine only protects against a limited number of Streptococcal serotypes.[2][3][29][16][30][31] United States
1977 Vaccination against Streptococcus pneumoniae in adults begins.[32]
1980s Scientific development The classification of pneumonia based on lists of different pathogens is abandoned in favour of a more practical classification that helps to guide investigation, management and therapy: CAP, 9 hospital-acquired (or nosocomial) pneumonia, and pneumonia in the immuno- compromised host.[4]
1983 Medical deveopment 23-valent polysaccharide vaccine is licensed.[3][31][33][34]
1988 Medical deveopment Vaccination of infants against Haemophilus influenzae type B begins, leading to a dramatic decline in cases shortlythereafter.[35]
2000 Medical deveopment The pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV), is introduced, offering protection against many more serotypes, including several strains that were resistant to antibiotics.[2][3][31]
2000 Medical deveopment Vaccination against Streptococcus pneumoniae in children begins.[32]
2008 Scientific development The definition of penicillin resistance is modified such that a much larger proportion of pneumococci are now considered susceptible to penicillin.[3]
2008 Epidemiology Pneumonia occurred in approximately 156 million children (151 million in the developing world and 5 million in the developed world) in the year.[5]
2009 Medical deveopment A 10-valent Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine is licensed for the vaccination of children.[36]
2009 The first World Pneumonia Day is held on November 2.[37][38][39]
2010 Medical deveopment A 13-valent Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine is licensed.[3][36]
2010 Medical development Pfizer, the manfacturer of PVC7, replaces it with an extended version, PCV13.[36][40][41] United States
2010 Epidemiology Worldwide, pneumonia resulted in 1.3 million deaths, or 18% of all deaths in those under five years, of which 95% occurred in the developing world during the year.[5][42][43]
2011 Scientific development 92 serotypes of streptococcus pneumoniae are documented by the time.[3][44][45]
2011 Epidemiology Pneumonia reveals to be the most common reason for admission to the hospital after an emergency department visit in the United States for infants and children.[46] United States
2016 Study A large trial studying the use of vitamin D to prevent pneumonia in children, finds no effect.[47][48][49]

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See also

External links


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  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 "Pneumonia History". news-medical.net. Retrieved 9 January 2019. 
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 "Pneumococcal Disease" (PDF). cdc.gov. Retrieved 9 January 2019. 
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