Jonas Edward Salk was born on October 28, 1914 in New York and died on June 23, 1995.
While studying at the New York University School of Medicine, he stood out from his class mates not just because of his academic expertise, but because he chose medical research in place of studying to be a practicing physician.
The Salk vaccine was discovered in1955. Up until then, polio was known as the most terrifying public health problem of the post war US.
In 1947, Jonas Salk was appointed into the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. In 1948, he started a project sponsored by the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis to regulate the number of diverse kinds of polio virus.
On April 12, 1955, when the vaccine's success was announced to the public, Salk was addressed as a "miracle worker," and the day was almost made a national holiday.
In 1960, he established the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in California, which is now a center for medical and scientific study.
He kept conducting research and published books including the World Population and Human Values: A New Reality, Man Unfolding, The Survival of the Wisest, Anatomy of Reality: Merging of Intuition and Reason.
During his last years, Salk searched for a vaccine against HIV.
Jonas Salk died due to a heart failure when he was 80 and was buried in San Diego at El Camino Memorial Park.
Jonas Salk won many awards and honors through his life. The latest documentary on his life was made on April 12, 2010, to help commemorate the 55th anniversary of the Salk vaccine, called The Shot Felt 'Round the World'.
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