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AFAR in the News: Irving Wright Award winners on deaths prevented by WI-38 cell strain BACK
On March 8, 2017, Healio.com featured 1984 Irving S. Wright Award of Distinction winner Leonard Hayflick, Ph.D., and Board Member and 2016 Irving S. Wright winner, S. Jay Olshansky, Ph.D. The article explored their work calculating the number of deaths prevented by Hayflick’s WI-38 human cell strain discovery.
In 1962, Dr. Hayflick produced the WI-38 human cell strain as a safer way to grow the viruses needed to produce vaccines against a number of diseases. The AFAR affiliates estimated that this human cell strain prevented 4.5 billion cases of disease and 10.3 million deaths worldwide over the course of more than five decades.
Dr. Olshansky reflected, “When we saw the results, we were rather shocked by the number. I suppose we shouldn’t have been, but it was a very large number of people that have been influenced.”
Read the full article here.
Leonard Hayflick, Ph.D., is a Professor of Anatomy at University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine, and was the Professor of Medical Microbiology at Stanford University School of Medicine.
S. Jay Olshansky, Ph.D., is a Professor in the School of Public Health at the University of Illinois at Chicago and Research Associate at the Center on Aging at the University of Chicago and at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
For more on cellular aging, read AFAR’s expert-edited InfoAging Guide to Cellular Senescence here.