If the world is successful in its fight against polio, the credit goes to American virologist Jonas Salk who developed a vaccine for the disease. Described as a “miracle worker”, his concerns for humanity were reflected in the fact that he did not claim a patent for the vaccine. He founded the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, based in California.
French virologist Luc Montagnier is known for discovering the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) which led him to jointly receive the 2008 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. Montagnier also made headlines promoting controversial and unverified claims related to vaccinations, homeopathy and COVID-19 pandemic, which he argued as man-made and possibly a result of an attempt to create an HIV/AIDS vaccine.
Polish-American medical researcher Albert Bruce Sabin is best-remembered for developing oral polio vaccine which is easier to give and more effective than earlier polio vaccine. His vaccine has remained instrumental in the ongoing effort of eradicating polio. Other vaccines developed by Sabin include the ones for encephalitis and dengue. He served as President of Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel.
David Baltimore is an American university administrator and biologist. He is currently serving as President Emeritus at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech). He won the 1975 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine for his discoveries concerning the interaction between the genetic material of the cell and tumor viruses. In 1999, he was honored with the National Medal of Science.
Hilary Koprowski was a Polish virologist and immunologist. He spent the majority of his career in USA and created an effective live polio vaccine. He also contributed significantly to the development of an improved rabies vaccine. He was the author or co-author of over 875 scientific papers. He was the recipient of many awards, including the Albert Sabin Gold Medal.
Robert Gallo is an American biomedical researcher best known for his immense contribution in ascertaining HIV as the infectious agent accountable for AIDS. He also played a major role in the progression of the HIV blood test and subsequent HIV research. He is also credited with co-founding the Institute of Human Virology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine.
David Ho is a Taiwanese-American physician, AIDS researcher, and virologist. He is best known for his contributions that led to the understanding and development of treatment for HIV infection. Ho is the recipient of numerous prestigious awards, including the Presidential Citizens Medal, the Ernst Jung Prize, the Hoechst Marion Roussel Award, and an induction into the California Hall of Fame.
Michiaki Takahashi was a Japanese virologist best remembered for developing the first chickenpox vaccine. He is also remembered for his association with Osaka University, where he was appointed as director of the institute's Microbial Disease Study Group. Michiaki Takahashi was the recipient of the Prince Mahidol Award and Saburo Kojima Memorial Culture Award.
Best remembered for his co-discovery of viruses during his research on the mosaic disease in tobacco, Russian botanist Dmitri Ivanovsky is regarded as one of the pioneers of virology. Interestingly, following his discovery, he didn’t focus on virology much and taught plant anatomy and physiology instead.
Françoise Barré-Sinoussi is a French virologist best known for her work that identified the human immunodeficiency virus as the cause of AIDS. Barré-Sinoussi's groundbreaking work earned her the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2008. An important virologist, Françoise Barré-Sinoussi has also received many other awards, including the Sovac Prize and the Körber European Science Prize.
Virologist Howard Martin Temin won his Nobel Prize for co-discovering the enzyme reverse transcriptase. His initial research was in the area of animal cancers, as he was also a PhD in animal virology from Caltech. He spent almost his entire academic career teaching at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
John Franklin Enders was an American biomedical scientist best remembered for winning the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1954 along with Thomas Huckle Weller and Frederick Chapman Robbins for discovering that poliomyelitis viruses have the ability to grow in cultures of different types of tissue. John Franklin Enders is often referred to as the Father of Modern Vaccines.
Renato Dulbecco was an Italian-American virologist whose work on oncoviruses earned him the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1975. Over the course of his illustrious career, Renato Dulbecco also won other prestigious awards, such as the Marjory Stephenson Prize, Louisa Gross Horwitz Prize, and Selman A. Waksman Award in Microbiology.
Frank Fenner was an Australian scientist best remembered for his achievements in the field of virology. He played a key role in the eradication of smallpox. He is also credited with introducing the Myxoma virus, which played a major role in controlling Australia's rabbit plague. During his illustrious career, Fenner was honored with prestigious awards, such as the WHO Medal.
Marion Koopmans is a Dutch virologist whose research considers noroviruses, emerging infectious diseases, and veterinary medicine. A respected virologist, Koopmans is part of the World Health Organization's scientific advisory group. Over the years, she has been honored with several prestigious awards, including the Machiavelli Prize. Currently, Marion Koopmans is working to understand the spread of Covid-19 disease.
Frank Macfarlane Burnet was an Australian virologist. Best remembered for his contribution to immunology, Burnet won the 1960 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for predicting acquired immunological tolerance. Burnet is also credited with developing and popularizing the theory of clonal selection. In 1960, he was also named the Australian of the Year for his contributions to science.
Nathan Wolfe is an American virologist best known for founding a not-for-profit organization called Global Viral, where he is serving as the director. Wolfe, who is also credited with founding Metabiota, spent more than eight years in Southeast Asia and sub-Saharan Africa conducting biomedical research. In 2009, Wolfe was mentioned in Rolling Stone magazine's Top 100 Agents of Change list.
Thomas Huckle Weller was an American virologist best remembered for his work that enabled the cultivation of polio viruses in a test tube, for which he received the prestigious 1954 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine alongside Frederick Chapman Robbins and John Franklin Enders. Thomas Huckle Weller was also the recipient of E. Mead Johnson Award and George Ledlie Prize.
Nobel Prize-winning American pediatrician and virologist Frederick Chapman Robbins is best remembered for his pathbreaking research on the poliomyelitis virus, which later helped in the development of polio vaccines. He also taught pediatrics at the Case Western Reserve University and worked with the US Army’s virus and rickettsia lab.
Microbiologist Thomas Francis, Jr. is best remembered for identifying the influenza A and influenza B strains and creating a vaccine effective against both. He also contributed to the research on the treatment of pneumonia. His medical research won his many accolades and awards, such as the Medal of Freedom.
Robert Huebner was an American virologist and physician best remembered for his research into viruses and the connection between viruses and cancer. His research led to new treatments and earned him the prestigious National Medal of Science in 1970. Robert Huebner was also inducted into the US National Academy of Sciences.
Thomas Milton Rivers was an American virologist and bacteriologist. Referred to as the father of modern virology, Rivers is best remembered for his association with the Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research; his work during the 1930s and 1940s helped the institute become a leader in viral research. In 1958, Rivers was made an inductee of the Polio Hall of Fame.
Norman Pirie was a British virologist and biochemist. He is best remembered for isolating tomato bushy stunt virus and discovering that a virus can be crystallized in 1936. Norman Pirie's work was a prominent milestone in understanding RNA and DNA.
Thomas C. Peebles was an American physician best remembered for his discoveries in the field of medicine. He was the first person to successfully isolate the measles virus. Thomas C. Peebles' research also proved that tetanus vaccine could be administered once in every 10 years as opposed to the popular belief that it must be given every year.
Marguerite Vogt was a German-born American virologist and cancer biologist. She is best remembered for her research on cancer and polio at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in the USA. Apart from making immense contributions as a scientist in various fields, Marguerite Vogt also served as a mentor to many junior scientists, including several future Nobel laureates.
Ludwig Gross was a Polish-American virologist who discovered two different tumor viruses capable of causing cancers in lab mice. Ludwig Gross was the recipient of many prestigious awards such as the R.R. de Villiers Foundation Award for Leukemia Research, Bertner Foundation Award, and William B. Coley Award.
Irving Millman was an American microbiologist and virologist. He is best remembered for his work which led to the formation of a test to nose out hepatitis B. Irving Millman was also involved in a team that developed a vaccine, which is now commonly administered to the newborns around the world.
Harry Martin Meyer Jr., was an American pediatric virologist best remembered for his role in defeating several infectious diseases, including German measles. He achieved national prominence when he discovered the first effective vaccine against German measles. Harry Martin Meyer Jr., is also credited with publishing over 100 scientific papers for textbooks.