cervicofacial actinomycosis

Eugen Bostroem

Eugen Woldemar Bostroem (October 13, 1850May 24, 1928) was a German pathologist who was a native of Fellin, Livonia (today known as Viljandi, Estonia). He studied medicine in Leipzig and Erlangen, receiving his degree in 1876. Afterwards he was an assistant at the Pathology Institute under Friedrich Albert von Zenker (1825-1898) in Erlangen. From 1883 until 1926 he was professor of general pathology and pathological anatomy in Gießen.

In 1890 Bostroem reportedly isolated the causative organism of actinomycosis from a culture of grain, grasses, and soil. This agent is now referred to as Actinomyces israelii, and is named after surgeon James Israel, who first discovered its presence in humans in the late 1870s. After Bostroem's discovery there was a general misconception that actinomycosis was a mycosis that affected individuals who chewed grass or straw. It is now known that it is a bacterial infection, the agent of which is caused by endogenous flora of mucous membranes.

In 1883 Bostroem was the first to describe a rare condition known as splenogonadal fusion. Since his discovery, approximately only 150 cases have been documented.

Selected writings

  • Beiträge zur pathologischen Anatomie der Nieren, (Contributions to the pathological anatomy of the kidneys), Freiburg i.B. and Tübingen, 1884.
  • Traumaticismus und Parasitismus als ursachen
  • Untersuchhungen tiber die Aktinomykose des Menschen; 1891.


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