December 27, 2013 |
GAZIANTEP, Turkey - Just when you thought you had the measure of the war crimes in Syria, the Assad regime goes one worse. The Syrian government is blocking efforts to distribute polio vaccine to children in opposition-controlled areas, who are the most endangered after an outbreak in October. More shocking, the United Nations and the international community are bowing to Assad and failing to get the vaccine to the children. This timidity could spark a polio epidemic throughout the Mideast.
April 15, 2013 |
Hilary Koprowski, a virologist and former director of the Wistar Institute who developed the first polio vaccine and helped improve the rabies vaccine for humans, has died. Koprowski, who was 96 and had been in declining health in recent months, died Thursday of pneumonia at his home in Wynnewood, according to his son Christopher Koprowski, chief of radiation oncology at the Helen F. Graham Cancer Center at the Christiana Care Health System. "Hilary Koprowski left an enduring mark on medical science and the health of humankind, and his many accomplishments serve as a testament to his legacy," said Russel E. Kaufman, president and chief executive officer of the Wistar Institute.
December 20, 2012 |
PESHAWAR, Pakistan - The United Nations suspended its polio vaccination drive in Pakistan on Wednesday after eight people involved in the effort were shot dead in the past two days, a U.N. official said. The suspension was a grave blow to the drive to bring an end to the scourge of polio in Pakistan, one of only three countries where the crippling disease still survives. On Wednesday, gunmen shot at a woman working on the campaign in northwest Pakistan, killing her and her driver, one of five attacks during the day on polio workers.
August 11, 2010 |
In a dispute with an air of déjà vu, Hilary Koprowski - the brilliant and feisty 93-year-old researcher who developed the first oral polio vaccine - is suing Thomas Jefferson University, where he moved in 1992 after being ousted as director of the Wistar Institute. In legal papers filed Friday in federal court in Philadelphia, Koprowski claims Jefferson has violated the Americans with Disabilities Act by refusing to let him retain - at his own expense - five employees who help him deal with age-related infirmities that "affect his ability to sit, stand, walk, and hear.
April 12, 2005 |
Fifty years ago today, we were introduced to the polio vaccine, an invention that transformed the nation and eventually the world. It is hard to imagine what it must have been like to be a parent in 1954, unable to protect your child from a disease indiscriminately snatching futures and lives. Thanks to this vaccine, today's parents don't have to. With the polio vaccine, and many others now routine in pediatric care, American children are now protected from diseases that 50 years ago terrorized their grandparents.
April 11, 2005 |
Just two weeks after the world heard the Salk polio vaccine was safe and effective, children started dying from it. In a little-remembered chapter of polio history, about 40,000 children in the United States developed temporary symptoms of the crippling disease after being injected with vaccine that inadvertently contained live polio virus. Five children died and 51 were permanently paralyzed by the faulty vaccine, which was pulled off the market, according to Paul Offit, an infectious disease doctor who has researched the case.
April 4, 2005 |
This month marks the 50th anniversary of one of the greatest achievements of the last century: Jonas Salk's polio vaccine. Few people now can recall the decades-long search for this vaccine, and how it involved many unsuccessful attempts and relied on the help of thousands of volunteers. But ultimately, the search was successful and the vaccine was proved effective. Today, the great scientific and public-health challenge is the search for a vaccine against AIDS, and just like half a century ago, volunteers in clinical trials can play a critical role in those efforts - including some in our region.
September 13, 2004 |
In the Al Aelaam district of Baghdad, two women carrying a cooler full of polio vaccine and pieces of blue chalk go house to house, knocking on doors and squeezing two drops of the slightly bitter liquid into the mouth of each child under 5 years old. Though most of the children wail, mothers and fathers smile as they watch vaccination teams put a mark on the front gate of each home, noting who has been immunized and who hasn't. For the parents, it's the return of a welcome tradition that assures their children are safe from at least one threat in dangerous post-invasion Iraq.
October 14, 2003 |
The nation's top scientists have confirmed the adage that everybody talks about the weather but nobody can do much about it - even though states, cities and utilities are spending millions of dollars trying. Attempts to make it rain by seeding clouds are increasing worldwide, with 66 efforts underway in America, mostly in the parched West, but there's no scientific evidence that it works, the National Academy of Sciences concluded yesterday. In 10 states and two dozen countries, meteorologists are seeding clouds, usually with silver iodide, in an effort to unleash more rain and snow.