Dr. Leonard Hayflick During The 1946 Polio Epidemic

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Dr. Leonard Hayflick lived in Philadelphia during the 1946 Polio epidemic. He was a teenage boy who would soon grow up loving microbiology and wanting to make a career out of it. He enrolled at Penn University, where he was taking classes like math, chemistry, and zoology. One course in particular that stood out to Dr. Hayflick was bacteriology. Bacteriology is now known as microbiology, the study of viruses, bacteria, and other microscopic organisms. Dr. Hayflick was fascinated one day in class when his technician walked in with several test tubes filled with agar. His technician used a fine needle with bacteria on it to streak the agar. After the bacteria was grown on the agar, the streaks were pink, purple, yellow, green, and white. After …show more content…

The lung tissue of the fetus was the only pre-organ used to create the WI-38 cell line because the tissue was able to divide and produce rapidly. This fetal tissue was able to produce cells that are almost genetically identical to one another, with no chance of having genetic mutations. Dr. Hayflick put the fetal lung tissue into isolation, so he could incubate it. Human fetal tissue was necessary for the WI-38 cell line to be developed because this type of cell is related to humans genetically. The WI-38 cell line is detrimental to the history of medicine because microbiologists can create a new cell line for …show more content…

The Rubella virus was infecting millions of people, especially pregnant women. When a pregnant woman is infected by Rubella, a miscarriage or a stillbirth will happen to the fetus. If the fetus makes it to birth, it will have extreme birth defects. Stanley Plotkin was a man who discovered a vaccination for the Rubella virus. He worked in the same biomedical research center as Dr. Hayflick, The Wistar Institute. The vaccine was produced by being grown in the WI-38 cell line. This vaccine is developed from the incubated virus that is purified and then weakened. This virus replicated itself quickly because the WI-38 cell line is a suitable environment for reproduction. The vaccination for Varicella and Measles was developed in the same way. The incubated virus is purified and then weakened, developing a vaccine for the disease. The vaccines are then injected into the body, where the immune system will see the virus and kill it. Since this virus was already in the body once, the antibodies will remember it and attack it, preventing you from getting sick. A lot of other well-known vaccinations were discussed in this book, however, not all of them came from the WI-38 cell line. Dr. Hayflick also discovered the MRC-5 cell line which was developed from fetal lung tissue. The vaccine for Hepatitis A was developed by the MRC-5 cell line where the incubated virus is purified and then weakened just like the WI-38 cell

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