From the beginning of mankind, man has looked for cures of illness. Jonas
Salk found a cure for one of the worst illnesses in the history of man, polio.
Jonas Salk's polio vaccine was a great discovery of his time, and it is still
being used today to eradicate polio worldwide. Dr. Salk is also known for other
medical discoveries. He was a quiet man who lived a rough childhood. He was
not looking for fame, instead, it found him. During the time before the vaccine,
many people, mostly parents with young children, were very scared. Dr. Salk's
vaccine was a great relief to everyone. Yet, today polio is still affecting
people, even after receiving the vaccine. Just as polio is still around today,
so is the flu virus. Dr. Salk did invent a flu vaccine to help in keeping the
flu virus at a low. At this time, Jonas Salk is working on a vaccine for the
most feared disease of today, AIDS.
Jonas Edward Salk was born to Polish-Jewish immigrants, Daniel B. and
Dora Salk, on October 28, 1914. Dr. Salk was born in upper Manhattan, but then
moved to the Bronx where he went to school. "His first spoken words were, 'Dirt,
dirt,' instead of the conventional, uninspired 'No, no' or 'Momma.' He was a
responsive child." Dr. Salk was "raised on the verge of poverty." Although
his family was poor, he did do exceptionally well in all the levels of education.
He graduated from Townsend Harris High School in 1929 and then went on to the
College of the City of New York where he received his B.S. in 1934. He finally
earned his M.D. degree in June of 1939 from the New York University College of
Medicine. Jonas Salk was "a somewhat withdrawn and indistinct figure" but was
always reading whatever he could lay his hands on. Dr. Salk went on to intern
for two years at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York. He then moved on to the
University of Michigan in Ann Arbor as a research professor in the Department of
Epidemology. It was here that he found a vaccine for... [continues]
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