Splendid solution: Jonas Salk and the conquest of polio

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In medical school when Franklin Delano Roosevelt was diagnosed with the disease shortly before assuming the Presidency, Salk was given an impetus to conduct studies on polio. His progress in combating the virus was hindered by the politics of medicine and by a rival researcher determined to discredit his proposed solution. But Salk's perseverance made history-and for more than fifty years his vaccine has saved countless lives, bringing humanity close to eradicating polio throughout the world. Splendid Solution chronicles Dr. Salk's race against time-and a growing epidemic that reached 57,000 reported cases in the summer of 1952-to achieve an unparalleled medical breakthrough that made him a cultural hero and icon for a whole generation.
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Grouped Work ID c59e128f-8189-e76c-0da4-da14a14354b3
Grouping Title splendid solution jonas salk and the conquest of polio
Grouping Author kluger jeffrey
Grouping Category book
Last Grouping Update 2019-02-17 22:44:17PM
Last Indexed 2019-02-18 00:06:48AM

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author Kluger, Jeffrey.
author_display Kluger, Jeffrey

The riveting story of one of the greatest scientific accomplishments of the twentieth century, from the coauthor of the #1 New York Times bestseller Apollo 13.

With rivalries, reversals, and a race against time, the struggle to eradicate polio is one of the great tales of modern history. It begins with the birth of Jonas Salk, shortly before one of the worst polio epidemics in United States history. At the time, the disease was a terrifying enigma: striking from out of nowhere, it afflicted tens of thousands of children in this country each year and left them-literally overnight-paralyzed, and sometimes at death's door.

Salk was in medical school just as a president crippled by the disease, Franklin D. Roosevelt, was taking office-and providing the impetus to the drive for studies on polio. By the early 1950s, Salk had already helped create an influenza vaccine, and was hot on the trail of the polio virus. He was nearly thwarted, though, by the politics of medicine and by a rival researcher eager to discredit his proposed solution. Meanwhile, in 1952, polio was spreading in record numbers, with 57,000 cases in the United States that summer alone.

In early 1954, Salk was weighing the possibility of trials of a not-yet-perfected vaccine against-as the summer approached-the prospect of thousands more children being struck down by the disease. The results of the history-making trials were announced at a press conference on April 12, 1955: "The vaccine works." The room-and an entire nation-erupted in cheers for this singular medical achievement.

Salk became a cultural hero and icon for a whole generation. Now, at the fiftieth anniversary of the first national vaccination program-and as humanity is tantalizingly close to eradicating polio worldwide-comes this unforgettable chronicle. Salk's work was an unparalleled achievement-and it makes for a magnificent read.

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primary_isbn 9780399152160
publishDate 2004
record_details ils:CARL0000239881|Book|Books||English|G.P. Putnam's Sons,|c2004.|373 p. : ill. ; 24 cm., overdrive:b83aeab3-7f47-4c31-ab2c-5a3079b30ba3|eAudiobook|Audio Books||English|Tantor Media||
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subject_facet Poliomyelitis -- United States -- History, Poliomyelitis -- Vaccination -- History, Poliomyelitis vaccine -- History, Salk, Jonas, -- 1914-1995, Virologists -- United States -- Biography
title_display Splendid solution : Jonas Salk and the conquest of polio
title_full Splendid Solution Jonas Salk and the Conquest of Polio, Splendid solution : Jonas Salk and the conquest of polio / Jeffrey Kluger
title_short Splendid solution :
title_sub Jonas Salk and the conquest of polio
topic_facet History, Medical, Nonfiction, Poliomyelitis, Poliomyelitis vaccine, Salk, Jonas, Vaccination, Virologists