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Thomas Francis Jr, US microbiologist

Thomas Francis Jr, US microbiologist

H406/0234

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Credit

NATIONAL LIBRARY OF MEDICINE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NATIONAL LIBRARY OF MEDICINE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Thomas Francis Jr (1900-1969), American microbiologist. Whilst working at the New York University School of Medicine Francis isolated the influenza A (1934) and B (1940) viruses. He also developed, with Jonas Salk, a single vaccine against both viruses. However, he is best known for his work as the director of the Poliomyelitis Vaccine Evaluation Centre, where in 1954 he extensively tested Salk's polio vaccine. Their health was monitored along with 1.2 million control children. When the vaccine was proven to work Francis oversaw the mass vaccination of 7 million schoolchildren, virtually eradicating polio.

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