In the intestines the insoluble starches and protein matters are converted into soluble dextrines, albumoses and peptones. These are absorbed and pass in the portal blood to the liver. Albumoses and peptones are deadly poisons if injected directly into the circulation, but they appear to undergo synthesis in the walls of the intestine and to be again built up into albumins, while a great part, at least, of the sugar undergoes synthesis into glycogen in the liver. From this organ the glycogen is gradually removed by conversion into sugar and passes into the blood, by which it is carried to every organ in the body. In 1863, I pointed out that much of it was probably destroyed in the muscles by a glycolytic ferment, which I succeeded in separating, although only imperfectly in isolating. It has only recently been shown, however, that this ferment is probably rendered active by some substances secreted by the pancreas, just as the pancreas itself is rendered active by secretin formed by the duodenum. Thus destruction of the pancreas prevents the utilization of sugar by the muscles, and gives rise to muscular weakness and glycosuria. The albuminous substances formed by synthesis in the intestine are also carried by the circulation to all parts of the body and are utilized either to build up tissue or to furnish energy by being broken down. The products of their decomposition are known by the name of "purin bodies" from a hypothetical substance, "purin," which stands in the same relation to the products of muscular waste that the benzine nucleus does to the aromatic compounds. The final product of muscular waste is urea, and although the name of uraemia was given to a form of auto-intoxication characterized by coma and convulsions, yet urea is now looked upon as not only innocuous, but rather advantageous by enabling the patient to withstand the inroads of certain pathogenic organisms, such as the tubercule bacillus. But very different are the views which are commonly held regarding uric acid. This is looked upon by many as the cause of the pains and swelling, and of the circulatory, nervous, digestive and cutaneous disturbances which are known as gouty. Some writers look upon uric acid as a substance that is either formed in the tissues of the body, or absorbed from the intestine during the consumption of foods which yield it and after its absorption to be either deposited in the tissues or excreted unchanged. This view is incorrect, for uric acid, like other products of albuminous waste, can be destroyed in the body, and the liver seems to be one of the chief places where such destruction takes place. It was pointed out many years ago by Stokvis that if urates be mixed with the pounded liver taken from an animal in full digestion, the urates disappear and are transformed into urea. These results have recently been confirmed by Bokenham and myself as well as by a number of other observers, so that the old view that gout is, to a great extent, due to disordered function of the liver has been rehabilitated. But the fasting liver either does not possess the power of destroying uric acid at all, or possesses it only to a very slight extent, and this power probably varies very much in amount in different species of animals, and in different individuals of the human race. In some persons, it is largely developed, and they have the power of eating great quantities of butcher's meat without any bad effects whatever. Others, again, possess the power to a very slight extent indeed, and a very little excess in albuminous food creates symptoms of discomfort. Although there are no direct experiments to show the effect of alcohol on the transformation of uric acid in the liver, yet it is probable that alcohol lessens the power considerably. At any rate, gout is rare in Russia and in Sweden, where alcohol is consumed to a large extent, but where very little flesh is eaten. Swedes who have come to this country and have taken flesh in addition to alcohol have developed gout, although it was unknown in their family. For persons with inadequate livers, the best dietary is one which contains a minimum of purin bodies, and the use of butcher's meat by them should be to a great extent interdicted. Yet purin bodies are by no means altogether useless. The ashes in a fire are of little use and tend to choke the grate and prevent combustion, but cinders are capable of being utilized and may be very useful indeed. In the same way urea may have some use in the organism though not very much, and may be likened to the ash of nitrogenous tissues. But other purin bodies, uric acid, creatin, creatinin, sarkosin, etc., may be regarded as cinders, and although they contain very little energy they are useful as stimulants. It is these substances which form meat extract and are present in beef tea and soups. They were shown by Pawlow to have a powerful stimulating action on the secretion of gastric juice by the stomach, and thus the practice of beginning a meal with soup is shown to have a good physiological reason. If the feelings of the person who takes beef-tea are to be trusted, it is a powerful stimulant to the nervous system, and frequently removes the depression, weakness and faintness which come on after long continued exertion or abstinence. But though a part of these substances may undergo utilization and destruction in the body, a considerable proportion is secreted unchanged and probably this is the reason why urine is employed in some parts of India, where the cow is a sacred animal and beef-tea impossible to obtain, in the same way that we use beef-tea.