The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Midwest Archives Conference Poster

At the Midwest Archives Conference student poster session

On Saturday, April 21, I had the honor of presenting a poster at the Midwest Archives Conference student poster session called, “The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Balancing Restrictions and Privacy with Access.” This was an exciting opportunity for me to share Dr. Sabin’s collection with fellow archivists and discuss what we are doing here at the Winkler Center to make his materials accessible to researchers worldwide. Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Midwest Archives Conference Poster

The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Polio and the Cold War

Telegram from Dr. Chumakov to Dr. Sabin, September 1958

The April 2012 issue of Scientific American Magazine features an article about Dr. Albert B. Sabin and Dr. Mikhail P. Chumakov called “Birth of a Cold War Vaccine” by William Swanson. Mr. Swanson conducted research in the Sabin Archives for the special report on polio. Regarding the “surprising” alliance of these scientists, Mr. Swanson wrote, “Their joint venture would have outraged fanatics on both sides of the iron curtain if those fanatics had been aware of it. Yet the collaboration—fleshed out in archival materials recently made available at the University of Cincinnati and by several contemporaneous sources—led to one of the greatest medical achievements of the 20th century and saved countless lives around the world” (p. 66). Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Polio and the Cold War

The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Commemorative Stamp

By Megan Ryan, Sabin Project Student Assistant

A scientist cannot rest while knowledge which might reduce suffering rests on the shelf.
-Albert B. Sabin [1]

Albert B. Sabin Commemorative Stamp

On March 8, 2006, Dr. Albert B. Sabin was recognized for his work in the elimination of polio by the United States Postal Service. An 87-cent stamp was created to honor the virologist “who developed the ‘sugar-cube’ vaccine that’s credited with wiping out polio in much of the world.”[2] The stamp, part of the Distinguished Americans series, was issued to recognized his various accolades and research accomplishments. The USA Philatelic Catalog explained that Dr. Sabin’s “successful efforts to develop a polio vaccine made him one of the most esteemed scientists in the world. For his dedication to fighting polio and other infectious diseases, he received numerous awards, including the National Medal of Science (1970) and the Presidential Medal of Freedom (1986).”[3] Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Commemorative Stamp

The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Featured in the Ohio Archivist

In my estimation no man has ever contributed so much effective information — so continuously over so many years — to so many aspects of poliomyelitis, as Sabin.
-John R. Paul, MD, renowned epidemiologist

The Spring 2012 issue of the Ohio Archivist is now available on the Society of Ohio Archivists’ (SOA) website. Along with SOA news and information for Ohio archivists, this issue features an article on the Sabin digitization project by Stephanie Bricking, Linda Newman, and Stephen Marine. The article describes how the Henry R. Winkler Center is “Making Dr. Sabin Accessible for All.”

Be sure to click the Ohio Archivist logo above to visit the SOA website and download a copy of the issue!
Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Featured in the Ohio Archivist

The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: March 30 is National Doctors Day

The One Hundred First Congress of the United States passed a joint resolution marking March 30, 1991, as “National Doctors Day.” This resolution recognized the importance of physicians by saying:

Whereas society owes a debt of gratitude to physicians for the contributions of physicians in enlarging the reservoir of scientific knowledge, increasing the number of scientific tools, and expanding the ability of health professionals to use the knowledge and tools effectively in the never-ending fight against disease; and

Whereas society owes a debt of gratitude to physicians for the sympathy and compassion of physicians in ministering to the sick and in alleviating human suffering

The resolution also called on the President to issue a proclamation for “National Doctors Day.” Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: March 30 is National Doctors Day

The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Reaction to the Salk Polio Vaccine Clinical Trials

Letter from Dr. Sabin to Dr. Richard Nelson regarding the 1954 mass trial of Salk's poliomyelitis vaccine.

By Megan Ryan, Sabin Project Student Assistant

The clinical trials for Dr. Jonas Salk’s polio vaccine began on February 23rd, 1954. This initial mass inoculation was huge in scale, “the clinical trials of the Salk vaccine were the largest ever conducted, involving nearly two million children”. Immediately the vaccine was announced and hailed as an enormous victory in the medical field against a disease plaguing countries around the world. In Dr. Salk’s obituary the aforementioned announcement was referred to as “the turning point in the battle against polio” and it was said that, “news caused a public sensation probably unequaled by any health development in modern times”.[1] Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: Reaction to the Salk Polio Vaccine Clinical Trials

The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: March 3, 1993

Page from the booklet called, "A Tribute to Albert B. Sabin." This is a copy of a certificate signed by former President Bill Clinton.

The nineteenth anniversary of Dr. Albert B. Sabin’s passing has recently occurred. In memory of Dr. Sabin, I thought I would take a look at some materials that were published shortly after he passed away on March 3, 1993. An introduction to the 1993 issue of Biologicals paying homage to Dr. Sabin said, “The contributions of Albert B. Sabin to modern virology and to public health remain so huge and his personality was so rich and unusual, that it is difficult to pay proper homage in a short article.”[1] This quote is still very true today, but hopefully these materials can share some insight into how friends and colleagues felt at the time. Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: March 3, 1993

The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: "Useful to Mankind"

April 24, 1957 - This letter from Dr. Sabin endorsed Dr. Dulbecco for the John Scott Award.

I read a recent New York Times obituary of Dr. Renato Dulbecco, a Nobel Prize winning virologist. In 1975, he and his colleagues received the award “for their discoveries concerning the interaction between tumour viruses and the genetic material of the cell.”[1] Although most knew him from his cancer research, Dr. Dulbecco’s earlier research was an important piece of Dr. Sabin’s oral polio vaccine puzzle. The work that they completed together was mentioned in a previous blog post called “A Polio Research Collaboration.” Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: "Useful to Mankind"

The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: New Display in the Winkler Center

By Megan Ryan, Sabin Project Student Assistant

The Sabin family is seen here with the street sign that is currently on display in the Winkler Center. (This photograph originally appeared in the Cincinnati Enquirer on 29 April 2000.)

The newest display case in the Henry R. Winkler Center for the History of the Health Professions features a small portion of the multitude of accolades deservedly presented to Dr. Albert B. Sabin. The display is titled “Highlights of Dr. Albert B. Sabin’s Awards and Honors,” and it features plaques spanning the years of 1960-1987. Dr. Sabin is highlighted as the recipient of the honors from the American Jewish Literary Foundation, Associacão Médica de Santos, the Pan American Medical Society, the Ohio Senior Citizens Group, Associacão “A Hebraica” de São Paulo, the American Legion, and the Tokyo Society of Medical Sciences and Faculty of Medicine, to name a few. Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: New Display in the Winkler Center

The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: An Influential Man

This is the first page of the 1982 letter from Dr. Sabin to Dr. Kew, which Dr. Racaniello refers to in his article.

Recently I received a Google alert for an article that mentioned Dr. Sabin. The article was about a live debate on H5N1 viruses sponsored by the New York Academy of Sciences, and it briefly discussed Dr. Vincent Racaniello’s opinion on using ferrets as “models of flu effects in humans.” According to the article, “when [Dr. Racaniello] began studying viral pathogenesis under Albert Sabin and other eminent experts, ‘The first thing they said was when you study viruses in animals, don’t think you’ll learn much about what happens in humans.’”

Since Dr. Racaniello specifically mentioned Dr. Sabin, I thought I would do a little bit of research on their connection. This led me to a 1993 article by Dr. Racaniello that appeared in an issue of Biologicals dedicated to Dr. Sabin. I found Dr. Racaniello’s discussion of how Dr. Sabin influenced his research quite interesting, so I thought I would share some of the materials that he refers to in the article. Continue reading The Albert B. Sabin Digitization Project: An Influential Man