Remarkably in the 0.5. cases occur in individuals who have not traveled outside the northern O.S . and who lack contact with known lepers , thus suggesting carriers . Seeking antibodies to phenolic glycolipid I has been done in an attempt to detect leprosy in healthy people in New Guinea.2 Similar studies may identify the healthy contact carriers responsible for cases in nonen demic areas of the U.S . This chemically defined glycolipid is believed to be invariably and exclusively associated with Mycobacterium leprae . l s
It i s curious indeed that the skin lesions of leprosy often reveal myriad acid-fast bacilli , which fail to grow on media suitable for fastidious bacteria and for the tubercle bacillus. Improvements in propagating the agent have been made by many dedicated investigators .