The recipients of the 2020 Future of Life Award, William Foege, Michael Burkinsky, and Victor Zhdanov Jr., join us on this episode of the FLI Podcast to recount the story of smallpox eradication, William Foege's and Victor Zhdanov Sr.'s involvement in the eradication, and their personal experience of the events.
Topics discussed in this episode include:
-William Foege's and Victor Zhdanov's efforts to eradicate smallpox
-Personal stories from Foege's and Zhdanov's lives
-The history of smallpox
-Biological issues of the 21st century
You can find the page for this podcast here: https://futureoflife.org/2020/12/11/future-of-life-award-2020-saving-200000000-lives-by-eradicating-smallpox/
You can watch the 2020 Future of Life Award ceremony here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=73WQvR5iIgk&feature=emb_title&ab_channel=FutureofLifeInstitute
You can learn more about the Future of Life Award here: https://futureoflife.org/future-of-life-award/
3:13 Part 1: How William Foege got into smallpox efforts and his work in Eastern Nigeria
14:12 The USSR's smallpox eradication efforts and convincing the WHO to take up global smallpox eradication
15:46 William Foege's efforts in and with the WHO for smallpox eradication
18:00 Surveillance and containment as a viable strategy
18:51 Implementing surveillance and containment throughout the world after success in West Africa
23:55 Wrapping up with eradication and dealing with the remnants of smallpox
25:35 Lab escape of smallpox in Birmingham England and the final natural case
27:20 Part 2: Introducing Michael Burkinsky as well as Victor and Katia Zhdanov
29:45 Introducing Victor Zhdanov Sr. and Alissa Zhdanov
31:05 Michael Burkinsky's memories of Victor Zhdanov Sr.
39:26 Victor Zhdanov Jr.'s memories of Victor Zhdanov Sr.
46:15 Mushrooms with meat
47:56 Stealing the family car
49:27 Victor Zhdanov Sr.'s efforts at the WHO for smallpox eradication
58:27 Exploring Alissa's book on Victor Zhdanov Sr.'s life
1:06:09 Michael's view that Victor Zhdanov Sr. is unsung, especially in Russia
1:07:18 Part 3: William Foege on the history of smallpox and biology in the 21st century
1:07:32 The origin and history of smallpox
1:10:34 The origin and history of variolation and the vaccine
1:20:15 West African "healers" who would create smallpox outbreaks
1:22:25 The safety of the smallpox vaccine vs. modern vaccines
1:29:40 A favorite story of William Foege's
1:35:50 Larry Brilliant and people central to the eradication efforts
1:37:33 Foege's perspective on modern pandemics and human bias
1:47:56 What should we do after COVID-19 ends
1:49:30 Bio-terrorism, existential risk, and synthetic pandemics
1:53:20 Foege's final thoughts on the importance of global health experts in politics
This podcast is possible because of the support of listeners like you. If you found this conversation to be meaningful or valuable, consider supporting it directly by donating at futureoflife.org/donate. Contributions like yours make these conversations possible.
Podden och tillhörande omslagsbild på den här sidan tillhör Future of Life Institute. Innehållet i podden är skapat av Future of Life Institute och inte av, eller tillsammans med, Poddtoppen.