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Encyclopedia > Smallpox vaccine
Smallpox vaccine being administered.
Smallpox vaccine being administered.

The smallpox vaccine was the first successful vaccine ever to be developed and remains the only FDA approved effective preventive for the deadly smallpox disease. It was first perfected in 1796 by Edward Jenner who acted upon the observation that milkmaids who caught the cowpox virus did not catch smallpox. Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Smallpox (also known by the Latin names Variola or Variola vera) is a contagious disease unique to humans. ... Portrait of Edward Jenner Edward Jenner, FRS, (17 May 1749 – 26 January 1823) was an English country doctor who studied nature and his natural surroundings from childhood and practiced medicine in Berkeley, Gloucestershire, England. ... Cowpox is a disease of the skin caused by a virus (Cowpox virus) that is related to the Vaccinia virus. ... Smallpox (also known by the Latin names Variola or Variola vera) is a contagious disease unique to humans. ...


Before smallpox vaccine

Before the smallpox vaccine the mortality of the severe form of smallpox - variola major - was very high. Historical records show that a method of inducing immunity was already known. The more hazardous variolation or inoculation – inoculation with smallpox pustules themselves – had been practiced throughout the latter half of the 17th century by physicians in India, China, Turkey, Persia, and Africa. One document in particular Essay on External Remedies 1715 by a Dr. Kennedy, who was doing research in Constantinople, documented physicians there: Immunity against some infections that can cause serious illness is generally beneficial. ... Obsolete: inoculation against smallpox using material from a vesicle or lesion of a person with smallpox. ... Inoculation, originally Variolation, is a method of purposefully infecting a person with smallpox (Variola) in a controlled manner so as to minimise the severity of the infection and also to induce immunity against further infection. ... For other uses of this term see: Persia (disambiguation) The Persian Empire is the name used to refer to a number of historic dynasties that have ruled the country of Persia (Iran). ... A world map showing the continent of Africa Africa is the worlds second-largest and second most-populous continent, after Asia. ... Year 1715 (MDCCXV) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Friday of the 11-day slower Julian calendar). ... This article is about the city before the Fall of Constantinople (1453). ...

"...scarred the wrists, legs, and forehead of the patient, placed a fresh and kindly pock in each incision and bound it there for eight or ten days, after this time the patient was credibly informed. The patient would then develop a mild case [of smallpox], recover, and thereafter be immune."[1]

This technique was documented as having a mortality rate of only one in a thousand. Two years after Kennedy's description appeared, March 1718, Dr. Charles Maitland successfully inoculated the five-year-old son of the British ambassador to the Turkish court under orders from the ambassador's wife Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, who four years later introduced the practice to England.[2] Mary Wortley Montague, by Charles Jervas, after 1716. ...

Early Vaccination

In the early empirical days of vaccination, prior to Pasteur's work on establishing a germ theory and Lister's on antisepsis and asepsis there was considerable cross-infection. One of the early vaccinators is thought to have contaminated the Cowpox matter - the vaccine - with Smallpox matter (he worked in a Smallpox hospital) and this produced essentially variolation. Other vaccine material was not reliably derived from Cowpox, but from other skin eruptions of cows[1]. In modern times an effective scientific model and controlled production were important in reducing these causes of apparent failure or iatrogenic illness. The germ theory of disease states that many diseases are caused by microorganisms, and that microorganisms grow by reproduction, rather than being spontaneously generated. ...

Some of the earliest statistical and epidemiological studies were performed by James Jurin in 1727 and Daniel Bernoulli in 1766. [3] This article is about the field of statistics. ... Epidemiology is the study of factors affecting the health and illness of populations, and serves as the foundation and logic of interventions made in the interest of public health and preventive medicine. ... James Jurin FRS FRCP (baptised 15 December 1684 - 29 March 1750) was an English scientist and physician, particularly remembered for his early work in capillary action and in the epidemiology of smallpox vaccination. ... Events 1727 to 1800 - Lt. ... Daniel Bernoulli Daniel Bernoulli (February 8, 1700 – March 17, 1782) was a Dutch-born mathematician who spent much of his life in Basel, Switzerland where he died. ... 1766 was a common year starting on Wednesday (see link for calendar). ...

Eradication of smallpox

By 1977, smallpox, long considered to be the most deadly and persistent human pathogenic disease, was eradicated by the World Health Organization. This was accomplished through a massive, worldwide outbreak search and vaccination program. However, the variola virus that led to the death of 300 million in the 20th century alone was not completely exterminated with the disease it caused. Three known repositories of the virus were left, one in Birmingham, England which was later destroyed after an accidental escape from containment caused the death of Janet Parker, and two still remaining at the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta, Georgia and the State Research Center of Virology and Biotechnology in Koltsovo, Russia. Each of those States states the repositories are retained for possible anti-bio-weaponry research and against some obscure reservoir of natural smallpox becoming evident. Also: 1977 (album) by Ash. ... Health Science > Medicine > Infectious Diseases Human infectious diseases grouped by causative agent and alphabetically arranged. ... “WHO” redirects here. ... A vial of the vaccine against influenza. ... Smallpox (also known by the Latin names Variola or Variola vera) is a contagious disease unique to humans. ... (19th century - 20th century - 21st century - more centuries) Decades: 1900s 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s As a means of recording the passage of time, the 20th century was that century which lasted from 1901–2000 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar (1900–1999... Janet Parker (1938/1939–September 11, 1978) was a British medical photographer, and is the last person known to have died from smallpox. ... The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta is recognized as the lead United States agency for protecting the public health and safety of people by providing credible information to enhance health decisions, and promoting health through strong partnerships with state health departments and other organizations. ... Nickname: Location in Fulton County and the state of Georgia Coordinates: , Country State Counties Fulton, DeKalb Government  - Mayor Shirley Franklin (D) Area  - City  132. ... The State Research Center of Virology and Biotechnology, also known as the Vector Institute is a highly sophisticated biological research center in Novosibirsk district, Koltsovo, Siberia, Russian Federation. ... Koltsovo was founded in 1979 as a settlement near Novosibirsk for employees of the State Research Center of Virology and Biotechnology (Vector). ... For the use of biological agents by terrorists, see bioterrorism. ...

Use of vaccine currently

The vaccine consists of the virus which causes the related, yet far milder, cowpox disease; this virus is appropriately named vaccinia, from the Latin vaca which means cow. This vaccine has functional viruses in it which improves its effectiveness but, unfortunately, causes serious complications for people with impaired immune systems (for example chemotherapy and AIDS patients, and people with eczema) and is not yet considered safe for pregnant women. A woman planning on conceiving within one month should not receive the smallpox immunization until after the pregnancy. In the event of an outbreak the woman should delay pregnancy if possible. A small, yet significant, percentage of healthy individuals also suffer adverse side-effects which, in rare cases, include permanent neurological damage. Vaccines that only contain attenuated vaccinia viruses (an attenuated virus is one in which the pathogenicity has been decreased through serial passage) have been proposed but some researchers have questioned the possible effectiveness of such a vaccine. Others point out that mass vaccinations would probably not be needed to counter a bioterrorist attack if many millions of doses of the current (possibly improved) vaccine could be delivered to victims within several days of exposure (the vaccine is effective to that point). This, along with vaccinations of so-called first-responders, is the current plan of action being devised by the United States Department of Homeland Security and FEMA in the United States. Cowpox is a disease of the skin caused by a virus (Cowpox virus) that is related to the Vaccinia virus. ... Vaccinia virus (VACV or VV) is a large, complex enveloped virus belonging to the poxvirus family of viruses. ... COW is an acronym for a number of things: Can of worms The COW programming language, an esoteric programming language. ... A scanning electron microscope image of a single neutrophil (yellow), engulfing anthrax bacteria (orange). ... Chemotherapy is the use of chemical substances to treat disease. ... For other uses, see AIDS (disambiguation). ... For the beetle, see Exema. ... Neurology is a branch of medicine dealing with disorders of the central and peripheral nervous systems. ... A technique developed originally by Louis Pasteur in the 1880s. ... For the use of biological agents in warfare, see Biological warfare. ... “DHS” redirects here. ... New FEMA seal The Federal Emergency Management Agency or FEMA is an agency of the United States government dedicated to swift response in the event of disasters, both natural and man-made. ...

The vaccine can cause complications for those around those who are vaccinated. People who get the vaccine will shed virus particles through vesicles on their skin and possibly through their respiratory tract. Infections in close and not-so-close contacts can ensue. The current plan to vaccinate first responders has the potential to cause infection in the most vulnerable section of the population, the hospitalized ill. Family contacts are also susceptible, although they are less vulnerable because their immune systems are presumably intact. Secondary infection can cause skin disease, pulmonary disease and rarely, neurologic disease.

As of June 21, 2003, a scientific advisory panel had issued a recommendation against further vaccination of first responders because a significant number of those vaccinated suffered heart problems, notably pericarditis and myocarditis. is the 172nd day of the year (173rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Pericarditis is inflammation of the sac surrounding the heart, the pericardium. ... In medicine (cardiology), myocarditis is inflammation of the myocardium, the muscular part of the heart. ...

In May 2007, the Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee of the US Food and Drug Administration voted unanimously that a new live virus vaccine produced by Acambis is both safe and effective for use in persons at high risk of exposure to smallpox virus. However, due to the high rate of serious adverse effects, the vaccine will only be made available to the United States Department of Defense for the Strategic National Stockpile. [2] [3] “FDA” redirects here. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... The Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) is the United States national repository of antibiotics, chemical antidotes, antitoxins, vaccines, life-support medications, IV administration supplies, airway maintenance supplies and medical/surgical items. ...

The main problem with developing a new, supposedly safer vaccine, is that, barring a bioterrorist attack on immunized individuals, its effectiveness cannot be tested on humans, and other animals do not naturally contract smallpox. Monkeys at USAMRIID research facilities have been infected, but tests on animals that are artificially infected with a human disease are notorious for giving false or misleading results. To demonstrate safety and effectiveness, human trials always have to confirm data obtained from animal testing. This article is about modern humans. ... For other uses, see Animal (disambiguation). ... Approximate worldwide distribution of monkeys. ... The U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases is based at Fort Detrick, Frederick, Maryland. ...

The smallpox vaccine is also the only FDA-approved treatment for monkeypox. As with smallpox, vaccination after infection is effective if the vaccine is given before symptoms develop. Monkeypox is a disease caused by the Monkeypox virus. ...

SIGA Technologies is developing a new drug that has been shown effective as a post-exposure prophylaxis in monkeys infected experimentally with human smallpox virus or with monkeypox virus. [4] [5]

See also

Balmis Expedition was a three year mission to the Americas led by Dr Francisco de Balmis with the aim of giving thousands the smallpox vaccine. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Cowpox. ...


  1. ^ Kennedy, Peter (1715). An Essay on External Remedies Wherein it is Considered, Whether all the curable Distempers incident to Human Bodies, may not be cured by Outward Means. London: A. Bell. 
  2. ^ Robertson, Patrick (1974). The book of firsts. New York: C. N. Potter : distributed by Crown Publishers. ISBN 0-517-51577-6. 
  3. ^ Blower S, Bernoulli D (2004). "An attempt at a new analysis of the mortality caused by smallpox and of the advantages of inoculation to prevent it. 1766". Rev. Med. Virol. 14 (5): 275-88. DOI:10.1002/rmv.443. PMID 15334536. 

A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ...

External links

  Results from FactBites:
Smallpox Vaccines: Questions and Answers (2549 words)
Smallpox (variola major) is a particularly dangerous biological weapon threat because of the severity of the illness it causes and the fact that it can be spread from person to person.
The vaccine is administered to the superficial layers of the skin using a bifurcated, or double-pointed, needle.
One such attenuated vaccine is referred to as modified vaccinia Ankara (MVA), a potential alternative smallpox vaccine that is under study based on the hope that it might be both safe and effective for individuals at high risk of complications from existing smallpox vaccines.
  More results at FactBites »



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