a broken reed

Science Dictionary
Reed   (rēd)  Pronunciation Key 
American physician and army surgeon who proved in 1900 that yellow fever was transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito. His research led to the mosquito eradication programs carried out by William Gorgas that virtually eradicated yellow fever from Havana, Cuba, and from the panama canal Zone.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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