Jonas Edward Salk born in 1914 and died in 1995 was most famous for developing the killed virus polio vaccine. Today polio is virtually eradicated from the world, and all of it thanks to Jonas Salk and his peer Albert Sabin (also Jewish) who perfected the Salk vaccine by putting small amounts of live virus into a liquid for which proved to be even more effective.
At one point in 1995 Edward R. Murrow asked Salk "Who owns the patent on this vaccine?" Surprised by the question's assumption of the requirement of a profit motive for his creation, he responded: "There is no patent. Could you patent the sun?"
Salk was born in New York to immigrant parents from Russia. Salkwent to the City College of New York and received his medical degree from the NYU School of medicine in 1939. As a young man however, Salk had no interest in medicine and wanted to become a lawyer. His mother persuaded him to become a doctor, and he finally became interested when he was offered to do research and teach biochemistry.
In his later life, Salk spent most of his time developing a vaccination on the AIDS vaccine, research that continues today.