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Celebrating Pitt’s Legacy of Vaccine Research

December 8th, 2020

On October 28, staff from the Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI) invited Pitt+Me participants, Pitt students, and community members to join us online to celebrate the birthday and legacy of the late Dr. Jonas Salk during the second annual Pitt+Me Day: A SALK-a-bration of Research.

Dr. Salk was a University of Pittsburgh researcher who led the team that developed the first polio vaccine more than half a century ago. Polio, a disease that attacks the nervous system and can lead to paralysis and death, was widespread in the United States in the 1950s. Today, due to the work of Salk and others—and thanks to the people who volunteered to test the polio vaccine in what was the largest clinical trial ever at the time—only a handful of polio cases are reported in the United States each year.  

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the celebration took place entirely online this year and included a  SALK-a-bration website featuring current COVID-19 and vaccine research studies, videos and resources from the Pitt Archives, information about Pitt’s history of research discoveries, and much more. We also took our life-size Dr. Salk cutout on a tour of Pittsburgh and invited everyone to follow along on our Pitt+Me Facebook and Twitter pages. You can catch up on the conversation and find Pitt+Me FAQs at #salkabration.

Whether you visited our website, contacted us with a question, signed up for a research study, or shared your own story about polio or COVID-19, we appreciate everyone who participated in Pitt+Me Day: A SALK-a-bration of Research 2020!