A History Of Polio In Canada
“When I got sick, my mother knew immediately what had happened and got me into the hospital,” he said.
Morton, an assistant curator at the Manitoba Museum who has studied polio epidemics in the province, said given outbreaks typically happened in the summer, debates raged over whether to close swimming pools and delay school openings in the fall.
Some doctors even discussed the same dilemmas faced by those in the worst-hit COVID-19 countries: which patients to save and which to let die because there was not enough equipment to go around.
There was not, however, the same kind of large-scale economic impact, Morton said. Unlike today, many businesses remained open. There are lessons to be drawn from polio, she said, including how people supported one another.
“I think this kind of community togetherness that you see in times of epidemics is a really important lesson,” Morton said.
“There’s a lot of fear and we’re being asked to socially distance ourselves from people, but we still need to work together as communities. You saw that with polio, and I think you’re really seeing that today with COVID-19 as well.”
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The Cutter Incident: How America’s First Polio Vaccine Led To A Growing Vaccine Crisis
In April 1955 more than 200 000 children in five Western and mid-Western USA states received a polio vaccine in which the process of inactivating the live virus proved to be defective. Within days there were reports of paralysis and within a month the first mass vaccination programme against polio had to be abandoned. Subsequent investigations revealed that the vaccine, manufactured by the California-based family firm of Cutter Laboratories, had caused 40 000 cases of polio, leaving 200 children with varying degrees of paralysis and killing 10.
Paul Offit, paediatrician and prominent advocate of vaccination, sets the `Cutter incident’ in the context of the struggle of medical science against polio and other infectious diseases over the course of the 20th century. He reminds us that, within a decade of Karl Landsteiner’s identification of the polio virus in 1908, an epidemic in New York killed 2400 people and left thousands more with a life-long disability. In the 1950s, summer outbreaks in the USA caused tens of thousands of cases, leaving hundreds paralysed or dead. `Second only to the atomic bomb’, polio was `the thing that Americans feared the most’.
The Virus Research Laboratory And Poliovirus
In 1947 Salk accepted a position at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine to establish a Virus Research Laboratory. He devoted his efforts to creating a first-class research environment and to publishing scientific papers on a variety of topics, including poliovirus. His work drew the attention of the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis , and he was invited to participate in a research program sponsored by the foundation. He agreed and took up his assignment of typing polioviruses.
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Widespread Immunization Needed For Covid
Immunizations were the great turning point in the battle against polio. First came the Salk vaccine in the 1950s, which was developed with the help of Connaught Laboratories , followed by the Sabin vaccine in the 1960s.
Former prime minister Paul Martin, who contracted polio when he was eight, noted his father, Paul Martin Sr., was instrumental in the distribution of the vaccine when he was health minister in the 1950s.
He said the same sort of widespread immunization program will be needed to bring COVID-19 under control, once a vaccine is developed. But he said it’s crucial it happens not just in North America and Europe.
“Polio still exists in certain countries in Africa and some in east Asia,” he said. “The fact is we’ve got to help those countries get rid of polio, otherwise it can come back. And it’s going to be exactly the same thing with COVID-19.”
“The fellow beside me said, ‘That’s an iron lung and that’s where you’re going to spend the rest of your life,'” said Martin, noting he never was actually placed inside one and eventually made a full recovery. “I never forgot it. That’s when I suddenly realized, as an eight-year-old, that I was sick.”
But there is one significant difference between polio and COVID-19, he said. Polio was predictable, coming in “invasions” summer after summer, he said, unlike the surprise of COVID-19.
WATCH | A history of polio in Canada:
Australian Contribution To Polio Eradication
Lameness surveys during the 1970s revealed that polio was also prevalent in developing countries. As a result, routine immunisation was introduced worldwide as part of national immunisation programs, helping to control the disease in many developing countries.
However, by the mid-1980s wild polio was still endemic in about 125 countries. Queensland accountant Sir Clem Renouf, who was then World President of Rotary International, decided to launch an eradication program, similar to that which had eliminated smallpox. In 1985 he persuaded Rotary clubs around the world to raise money to make this happen.
Having raised $247 million, Rotary began work in South America. The World Health Organization, realising that Rotary was meeting with success, joined forces with Rotary and other non-government organisations and launched the Global Polio Eradication Initiative in 1988.
Polio has now been eradicated in most countries, but as of 2017 remains endemic in Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan. High immunisation levels remains crucial even in countries where polio has already been eliminated.
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Jonas Salk Inventor Of The Polio Vaccine Could You Patent The Sun
Its a topical question during this COVID-19 pandemic: why are the companies that developed the vaccines against the coronavirus not giving away their patent on the vaccines for the greater good? Why arent governments forcing pharmaceutical companies to license other companies to share their patented invention under a compulsory license arrangement?
To support that idea, people like to bring to memory the history of the invention of the vaccine against polio. Heard of Jonas Salk or Albert Sabin? Jonas Salk became a hero when he invented the vaccine against polio, a worldwide disease affecting young children, paralyzing between 20,000 and 50,000 children annually. Although it was the first polio vaccine, it was not to be the last, as Albert Sabin introduced an oral vaccine in the 1960s that replaced Salks.
Because Salks vaccine was being used successfully in the United States, Sabin could not get support for a large-scale, controlled field trial like the trial of Salks vaccine. In 1957, Sabin convinced the Soviet Unions Health Ministry to conduct field studies with his vaccine. After the Soviet trial succeeded in 1960, the U.S. Public Health Service approved the vaccine in 1961 for manufacture in the United States, and the World Health Organization used a live-virus vaccine produced in the USSR.
Why did Salk not patent his invention?
We cite an article by SLATE from 2014:
Measles Mumps And Rubella
Measles, Mumps, and Rubella are viral infections that have each caused widespread, deadly disease outbreaks. Throughout the 1960s, individual vaccines were developed for each of them, but a decade later, they were combined into one.
Measles was the first of the three to receive its own vaccine in 1963, followed by mumps in 1967, and rubella in 1969. Two years later, in 1971, Maurice Hilleman of the Merck Institute of Therapeutic Research developed a combined vaccination that would provide immunity for all three viruses.
Hilleman was credited with creating the first measles and mumps vaccine, and began researching ways to incorporate a system of immunity for each virus. Using his previous research and a rubella vaccine developed by Stanley Plotkin in 1969, he created the first successful MMR vaccine in just two years.
According to the CDC, “One dose of MMR vaccine is 93% effective against measles, 78% effective against mumps, and 97% effective against rubella.”
“Two doses of MMR vaccine are 97% effective against measles and 88% effective against mumps.”
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The Schedule From 2011 To Present
Annual updates to both the childhood and adult immunization schedules offer guidance to healthcare providers in the form of new recommendations, changes to existing recommendations, or clarifications to assist with interpretation of the schedule in certain circumstances. The schedules are reviewed by committees of experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American Academy of Family Physicians.
Important changes to the schedule:
- New vaccines: meningococcal serogroup B vaccine
- Additional recommendations for existing vaccines: HPV , intranasal influenza vaccine
- Discontinuation of vaccine: intranasal influenza vaccine
2020 | Recommended Vaccines
* Given in combination as DTaP** Given in combination as MMR
Hidden Black Scientists Proved The Polio Vaccine Worked
Tuskegee Institute researchers showed Jonas Salks vaccine protected children by developing a key test
In the summers of the early 1950s, multitudes of American children were stuck in their home. Parents didnt permit them to play together because, when the weather got warm, society entered a nightmare called polio. Children would eagerly begin their school breaks with a bicycle, scooter or kite and end them in crutches, braces or an iron lung.
The disease poliomyelitis, or polio, had been in the medical textbooks for decades. In the summers of the early 20th century, however, this illness grew into an epidemic. The virus behind the disease could infect anyone, but in the U.S., it caused the worst damage among children under five years old, and polio was consequently called infantile paralysis.
To evaluate his vaccine, Salk would need tremendous amounts of HeLa cells. He would get help not from traditional established institutions such as Harvard University or Yale University but from a small Black college in the South that had become famous for cultivating peanuts.
The inoculation was approved for distribution, cases of the disease began to drop, and Salk went on to become a national hero. But the role of the Tuskegee Institute and its researchers remained hidden long after the fear of polio faded from the nations memory.
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Who Created The Polio Vaccine
In the early 1950s, two prominent medical researchers each found a way to protect the world from poliomyelitis, the paralysis-causing disease commonly known as polio. The vaccines created by Dr. Jonas Salk and Dr. Albert Sabin resulted in the near-global eradication of polio. Here’s how they did it.
Development Of Pv Vaccines
In 1935, Brodie tried an inactivated vaccine with 10% formalin suspension of PV taken from infected monkey spinal cord he tried it first on 20 monkeys, then on 3000 Californian children. The results were poor and additional human studies were never performed. In the same year, Kollmer tried a live attenuated virus consisting of a 4% suspension of PV from infected monkey spinal cord, treated with sodium ricinoleate. He used it on monkeys and then on several thousand children. The acute paralysis occurred in about 1/1000 vaccines shortly after administration and some cases were fatal.
The discovery that the various antigenic strains of PVs could be grouped into three distinct viral types and the propagation of the PV in vitro led to the development of the vaccines against poliomyelitis: the formalin-inactivated vaccine by Jonas Salk and the live-attenuated vaccines by Albert Sabin .
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Who Invented The Polio Vaccine
The invention of the polio vaccine is one of the most notable inventions in the medical field. Its invention led to a great breakthrough in the fight against polio which was one of the leading causes of deformities and deaths in the world. Polio is known to paralyze the limbs of individuals who are not vaccinated against it. The individuals are left with an inability to walk and conduct vigorous physical activities. In extreme cases, the victims of the disease end up dying.
How Was The Polio Vaccine Developed
In todays world, the poliovirus circulates in just three countries Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria, plus a risk for the return of polio in Papua New Guinea.
That wasnt always the case. In the last century alone polio plagued the United States.
But, the entire history of polio dates back long before there was any recorded history. It wasnt until British physician, Michael Underwood, provided the first clinical description of the disease in 1789 that the world recognized polio as a detrimental problem.
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Allergic Reaction To The Vaccine
Inactivated polio vaccine can cause an allergic reaction in a few people since the vaccine contains trace amounts of antibiotics, streptomycin, polymyxin B, and neomycin. It should not be given to anyone who has an allergic reaction to these medicines. Signs and symptoms of an allergic reaction, which usually appear within minutes or a few hours after receiving the injected vaccine, include breathing difficulties, weakness, hoarseness or wheezing, heart rate fluctuations, skin rash and dizziness.
Development Of The Salk Vaccine
Researchers began working on a polio vaccine in the 1930s, but early attempts were unsuccessful. An effective vaccine didn’t come around until 1953, when Jonas Salk introduced his inactivated polio vaccine .
Salk had studied viruses as a student at New York University in the 1930s and helped develop flu vaccines during World War II, according to History.com. In 1948, he was awarded a research grant from President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis, later named . Roosevelt had contracted polio in 1921 at age 39, and the disease left him with both legs permanently paralyzed. In 1938, five years into his presidency, Roosevelt helped to create the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis to raise money and deliver aid to areas experiencing polio epidemics.
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Salk’s vaccine was unusual because instead of using a weakened version of the live virus, such as what is used for mumps and measles, Salk’s vaccine used a “killed,” or inactivated, version of the virus. When the “dead” poliovirus is injected into the bloodstream, it can’t cause an infection because the virus is inactive but the immune system can’t distinguish an activated virus from an inactivated one, and it creates antibodies to fight the virus. Those antibodies persist and protect the person from future poliovirus infection.
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Salk Poliomyelitis Vaccine Trial
Despite widespread concern over testing the vaccine on live human subjects, the studies continued. In the early 1950s, the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis funded a study by Dr. Jonas Salk and his team of researchers. They planned to try three different strains of injectable, inactive-virus vaccines on humans.
Early Polio Vaccine Projects
Unfortunately, initial trials were poorly executed and caused great harm to those involved. Teams of researchers in New York and Philadelphia both administered vaccines containing active poliovirus to tens of thousands of living subjects, including children and chimpanzees. Many subjects became severely ill or paralyzed, experienced allergic reactions, and even died of polio.
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Polio Spreads Across The Globe
It took almost 50 years for another scientific study to detail the features of the disease and its connection with the spinal cord. At this point, German doctor Jacob Heine shared his findings in 1840 on poliomyelitis. This was the first medical report of the disease and acknowledgement that it was an official disease.
But a little more than 50 years after that breakthrough, the U.S. had its first polio outbreak. Located in Vermont, the 1894 epidemic affected 132 people, leading to 18 deaths.
Fast forward to 1921.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the 32nd president of the US, contracted polio at the age of 39. Despite being limited to a wheelchair for most of his life after, the presidents illness was largely kept a secret from the public.
Polio didnt just affect the common person it affected nearly anyone that came in contact. The potentially deadly disease swept the nation and the world without a cure or vaccination to subside the neurological and physical traumas it caused.
In 1935, Maurice Brodie and John Kolmer attempted to create a vaccination that ended with disastrous results.
Brodie tested the vaccine on himself and thousands of children volunteered by their parents. Within one year the trial ended and nine children who received the vaccine had died. Lab tests later showed that Kolmers experimental vaccine was the cause.
Due to a failure trial of Brodie and Kolmers vaccination, hope was not high.
Although, a medical hero stepped into the scene in 1947.
Lessons From How The Polio Vaccine Went From The Lab To The Public That Americans Can Learn From Today
In 1955, after a field trial involving 1.8 million Americans, the worlds first successful polio vaccine was declared safe, effective, and potent.
It was arguably the most significant biomedical advance of the past century. Despite the polio vaccines long-term success, manufacturers, government leaders and the nonprofit that funded the vaccines development made several missteps.
Having produced a documentary about the polio vaccines field trials, we believe the lessons learned during that chapter in medical history are worth considering as the race to develop COVID-19 vaccines proceeds.
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Why Do We Use The Polio Shot And Not The Oral Polio Vaccine
In about 1 of every 2.4 million recipients, the live, weakened virus contained in the oral polio vaccine causes paralysis. The shot does not have this same side effect because, unlike the oral version, the shot contains killed virus that cannot replicate and, therefore, cannot cause paralysis.
Between 1961 and 1996, children in the United States received four doses of the oral vaccine. This changed beginning in 1997 and continued throughout 1999 when children typically received two doses of the shot followed by two doses of the oral vaccine. Since that time, infants have received four doses of the shot.
Many other countries continue to use the oral polio vaccine because it is more economical and easier to administer, allowing more people to get the vaccine. It also provides better community immunity.