History of Vaccines Blog
It's Friday, so it's time to look at the vaccine-related news that circulated this week.
In Cleveland, an Orthodox Jewish school has decided to revamp its vaccine requirements after seeing what low vaccination rates have done with regards to measles in Israel and New York:
Polio is a vaccine-preventable disease that has almost been eradicated from the planet through the use of a safe and effective vaccine. Fifty-plus years ago, it ravaged children around the globe in an indiscriminate manner, leaving many of them unable to breathe on their own. For those who could afford it or have access to it, the Iron Lung was a way to keep breathing.
Measles was declared eliminated in the United States in 2000 as part of a lengthy public health campaign to eliminate it in the entire continent, a campaign that reached its goal in 2016. Before the measles vaccine was developed, it is estimated by the World Health Organization that there were about 2.6 million deaths worldwide, most of them in young children.
In the United States, the hunt continues for a vaccine against Malaria. Malaria is a parasitic infection caused by the Trypanosoma sp. of blood parasites. At the Lovell Lab at the University of Buffalo, scientists are researching a Maria vaccine that, so far, has given promising results in mice:
This quick video (under 1 minute) sums up the history of the rabies vaccine. Did you know that Louis Pasteur was not a physician? Can you imagine a non-physician today administering an experimental vaccine in his own private lab?
News outlets are reporting an increase in the cases of vaccine-preventable diseases – and some outbreaks – from Thailand and Indonesia due to religious concerns about vaccinations. In both countries, Muslim religious authorities have declared vaccines to be unacceptable since, according to them, vaccines contain pork-derived products.
In Indonesia, religious leaders issued an edict about the Measles, Mumps and Rubella vaccine (MMR), leading to low uptake of the vaccine and higher incidence of measles outbreaks:
"Back in August, Indonesia's peak Islamic body officially declared the measles and rubella vaccine forbidden, under assertions they were based on material derived from pigs.