Georg Lichtenheld, German veterinary scientist, qualified as a veterinarian in Dresden in 1900 and in 1903 was awarded a doctoral degree (Dr Phil) by the University of Leipzig. His thesis, Ueber die fertilitaet und sterilitaet der echinokokken by Rind, Schwein, Schaf und Pferd (On the fertility and sterility of echinococcus [a genus of tape worms] in cattle, pig, sheep and horse), was published in Jena in 1904 (27p). He entered the colonial service in 1905 and worked as an assistant to Professor Robert Koch* in German East Africa (now Tanzania). In 1908 he reported on Koch's research on East Coast Fever in that territory, in the Zeitschrift fuer Hygiene und Infektionskrankheiten.
By 1909 Lichtenheld held the position of chief veterinary surgeon at Dar es Salaam, where he was visited by Dr Arnold Theiler*. During that same year he visited South Africa and spent some time at the Veterinary Bacteriological Laboratories of Transvaal (later the Veterinary Research Institute) at Onderstepoort. Theiler asked him to carry out some experiments to determine if the fixing of complement could be used in connection with African horse sickness and East Coast fever. The experiments were carried out with the assistance of H. Sieber*, but were not completed at the time of Lichtenheld's departure. He reported on this work in a "Preliminary communication on the fixing of compliment in horse sickness and East Coast fever", which was published in the Report of the Government Veterinary Bacteriologist (Transvaal) for 1909-1910.
In August 1909 Lichtenheld and Theiler travelled to Europe on the same ship. During their journey they discussed mainly the problem of East Coast Fever. They appear to have become firm friends, for in 1928 and again in 1936, when Lichtenheld resided in Wiesbaden, Germany, Theiler and his wife stayed with him for some time.
Shortly after his visit to South Africa Lichtenheld published a paper titled "Beobachtungen ueber eine dem boesartigen Katarrhalfieber der Rinder aehnliche Krankheit in Deutsch-Ostafrika" (Observations on a disease resembling malignant catarrhal fever of cattle in German East Africa) in the Zeitschrift fuer Infektionskrankheiten, parasitaere Krankheiten und Hygiene der Haustiere (1910). Other publications by him, all in German, dealt with Nagana (1910, 1912) and various cattle diseases in German East Africa (1910, 1913).