The following experiments were conceived and carried out before René Quinton contemplated the use of seawater for human treatment and well before French hospitals were using his protocol for mass therapy on children and chronically ill adults. Although Quinton and his contemporaries referred to the dogs in their experiments as ‘organisms’, they treated the dogs with kindness and no disrespect was implied. They recognized the common mammalian characteristics and physiology and thus realized the potential for the experiments to be appropriate for mammalian species other than dogs. These experiments have been described, in detail, in Quinton’s book – “L’eau de Mer – milieu organique” – (1912: Ed. Masson) Reprinted: Ed. ENCRE 1995. The experiments below were successfully repeated 50 years after Quinton’s daring exploits. All references to seawater infer that ordinary filtered and unheated seawater was reduced (diluted with distilled water) to the isotonic .9% state of plasma.
GROUP 1 EXPERIMENTS (pages 165-168)
Partial drainage of blood followed by intra-organic injections of seawater, via the saphenous vein, using normal adult dogs.
The first group of experiments were conducted in which different volumes of isotonic 0.9% seawater (66% – Expt 1, 81% – Expt 2 and finally 104% – Expt 3) proportional to the weight of the dog was injected, over a period of time.
In Expt 4 a small dog was injected with 0.9% isotonic seawater at three varying rates and reactions were observed and recorded. It was discovered that as long as the rate of injection kept pace with renal elimination, no traumatic reactions were encountered.
THIRD EXPERIMENT OF GROUP 1 (page 167)
A stray dog, was injected with 10.4 kg of 0.9% isotonic seawater. This enormous quantity of seawater, representing 104% of the dog’s own body weight, was injected over a period of 11 hours and 40 minutes. This was equivalent to the injection of 62.4 kg of seawater into a man weighing 60 kg.
Here follows René Quinton’s account of this experiment:
The dog lay quietly in the morning, covered, his body weight was 10 kg, the rectal temperature was 39.7ºC. The temperature of the injection was about 35-40ºC. The rate of injection was 14.9 g/min – the same as urinary elimination. During the 11 hours and 40 minutes of the injection, there was no agitation, no diarrhea, no albuminuria, and all the reflexes remained active. The dog kept his eyes on the operator and reacted to every caress. Occasional vomiting of a yellowish liquid (50cc total quantity). The rectal temperature declined in stages to 36.8ºC. and at the end of the injection period rose to 37.2ºC. By this time, the dog had absorbed 10.4 kg of [isotonic sea] water and had excreted 9.4 kilos of urine.
One hour and ten minutes after the injection, the dog was back on his feet, moved normally except for a slight limp caused by the binding of his feet during this experience. At this time, his rectal temperature was normal at 39ºC.
The next day, 14 hours after the injection, the animal was remarkably gay, ran and jumped in the laboratory, ate two portions of meat weighing 600 grams and drank 100 grams of water. His urine, from the night, showed a slight albumin cloudiness.
The day after, and the following days, the dog continued to behave the same way: more energetic than before the injection, no diarrhea, no vomiting, normal albumin, not troubles of any kind.
FOURTH EXPERIMENT OF GROUP 1 (page 168)
A third stray dog was injected with a large quantity of isotonic seawater. A small dog weighing 5 kg, was injected with 3.5 kg of isotonic seawater at injection rates varying from 67.3 ml/min per 10 kg of body weight during the first 30 minutes, to 5.4 ml/min (renal elimination) to 58.2 ml/min in a short period of 90 minutes. The dog’s abdomen rapidly ballooned and the heart rate slowed perceptibly. The initial body temperature dropped from 38.2ºC to 32.5ºC and urination diminished. The corneal reflex disappeared.
It was noted that during the slow injection rate the traumatic symptoms did not aggravate but normalized. As soon as rapid injection rates resumed, the traumatic symptoms reappeared while renal elimination slowed.
As soon as the injection stopped [after 90 minutes], the body temperature rose, urination accelerated and the coronary reflex returned. The dog began to stagger about, his abdomen was no longer swollen . He took several steps and collapsed. The shock had been too violent and he found it hard to recover. By the eleventh day, the recovery was complete. The animal was extremely gregarious and exuberant inspite of his confinement for days in the basement. His body weight was still 5 kg.
GROUP 2 EXPERIMENTS (pages 169-170)
The complete drainage of blood and replacement with an equal amount of isotonic seawater.
This experiment involved withdrawing a quantity of blood from a mongrel dog and replacing it with an equal quantity of 0.9% isotonic seawater. No special precautions were made to prevent infection. Total and complete bleeding would have caused the death of the dog if left to its own resources. Moreover, the experiment withdrew not only a considerable part of the interior medium itself, but also a proportion of the cellular fluid that sea water cannot initially restore to the dog. The respiratory function was gravely compromised for lack of haemaglobin and thus oxygenation. In addition, there was at the same time depletion of all the WBCs inherent in the blood, even at the moment when the operation on the animal, handled without special precautions, had to fight against the infection inevitably introduced by the intervention itself. The total bleeding thus put the dog at the door of death, and this represented the most unfavourable conditions to overcome victoriously if sea water is deemed to have the least toxic disadvantage. For the experiment to succeed in spite of so many unfavourable factors, it would be necessary that sea water be indeed a perfect analogy to the interior medium.
The dog was to be placed at death’s door, so that this would be a final test for the curative power of Quinton seawater and would demonstrate whether the isotonic water was an adequate replacement for the dog’s blood. Here is the report by the observers:
Dog of 12.4 kg. Withdrawal of most of his blood from the femoral artery, of 491g over 4 minutes, without any antiseptic precautions, representing one twentieth of the dog’s body weight. The corneal reflex halted. Presented with the impossibility of withdrawing any more blood, the injection of isotonic seawater at 23ºC began. 532 ml (18.7 ounces) at 23 degrees C were injected over a period of 11 minutes. The corneal reflex was restored. The untied animal was unable to walk, breathed with difficulty, with short breaths and remained stretched out on a blanket without moving.
After 21 hours, the dog trots around the laboratory. The red blood cells have dropped from 6,800,00 before the treatment [experiment] to 2,900,000; white blood cell level is at 15,400 from a previous 14,000, the haemoglobin has decreased from 19 to 12. These results are a witness to the enormous withdrawal of blood, yet, the animal eats and drinks.
The condition of the dog changed: the wound discharged puss, the body temperature rose to 40ºC and the condition looked grave, the animal sad and depressed. Now it was to be seen whether the organism, impoverished by the withdrawal of blood could overcome the infection aided by the seawater and accomplish leukocytosis [manufacture of white blood cells].
Although the condition continued to look grave, the red blood cells were now at 3,020,000, the white blood cells at 24,000,000 and the haemoglobin at 16. Leukocytosis had been accomplished at a ratio of 1:484 vs. 1:125 before the procedure. That same evening, the dog ate 400g of meat.
Thereafter, the progress was rapid. On the eighth day, the dog became exaggeratedly exuberant, ran about wildly and this continued during the following days. The results showed that the organism had become revitalized by the seawater to a level that EXCEEDED that before the blood had been withdrawn. Five years later, Sodium, so named in memory of the experiment, was still alive and well.
Later, a doctor, Dr Tussaud, claimed that he had obtained the same results as René Quinton while completely bleeding a dog and then injecting it with simple physiological salt solution. On further investigation it emerged that the animal had survived only two months in the most extreme state of exhaustion, hardly able get around the laboratory. There is therefore no comparison to the results, the physiological salt solution being no substitute for the Quinton Plasma.
Following the successful completion of the group 1 and Group 2 Experiments, Quinton proceeded with further experiments to ascertain the life-supporting properties of the Quinton Isotonic seawater.
GROUP 3 EXPERIMENTS (Page 171- 173)
The definitive experiment was to extract white blood cells (WBCs) from a fish, a lizard, a man, a rabbit, a dog and a chicken. Each sample of WBCs was then mixed with varying amounts of seawater (up to 200 times dilution of the equivalent unit of blood with Marine Plasma) to observe when the WBCs would cease living. This proved a total success. In all cases, the WBCs (effectively simulating other cellular activities in an organism) presented all the vital signs of normal life within the body: adherence and amoebic movements.
It was found that WBCs were able to survive 25+ hours in non-sterile plasma solutions and upwards of a month in sterile solutions. This surpasses by far even the most optimistic artificial plasma solutions.
The Law of Marine Constancy
From the above experiments René Quinton constructed his Law of Marine Constancy which says
“La vie animale, apparue à l’état de cellule dans les mers, tend à maintenir, pour son haut fonctionnement cellulaire, à travers la série zoologique, les cellules constitutives des organismes dans le milieu marin des origines.”
Which translates as
“Animal life, that had originally appeared in cellular form in the seas, tends to maintain, for its best cellular functioning throughout the zoological species, its fundamental cells in a marine environment similar to its origin”.