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Malnutrition-Infection Interactions in the Tropics

Leonardo J. MataInstitute of Nutrition of Central America and Panama, Instituto de Investigación en Salud, Universidad de Costa Rica, Guatemala, Costa Rica

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Mr. President Dr. Rozeboom, Officers and Members of the Society, ladies and gentlemen:

I begin with a word of appreciation to Dr. Desowitz and Members of the Charles Franklin Craig Lectureship Committee for having invited me to speak on the problem of malnutrition and infection in the less developed areas of the world. I accept this invitation because it gives me an opportunity to express to this distinguished Society some views on the nature and origin of malnutrition and infection interactions in the poor nations of the world.

Countries can be divided into the highly industrialized and the less developed or preindustrial. The industrialized societies generally have larger natural resources, better developed science and technology, efficient food production and higher levels of education and health than the less developed nations. There is evidence to indicate that the gap is widening.

Biological factors have had more emphasis than socioeconomic factors in attempted derivation of causality in health problems in tropics and subtropics.

Author Notes

Address for reprint requests: Instituto de Investigación en Salud, Universidad de Costa Rica, San Pedro, Montes de Oca, Costa Rica.