Throwback Thursday: Hatching a Virus

You may have heard about how vaccines are made – something about growing a virus in an egg, right? Unless you’re in the medical profession, the “how” of this process might be a bit of a mystery. In fact, hatching a virus out of an egg is pretty straightforward.

Courtesy of the Baylor College of Medicine Archives
Courtesy of the Baylor College of Medicine Archives

This photo, from the 1967 Inside Baylor Medicine, courtesy of the Baylor College of Medicine Archives, shows a researcher inoculating an egg with rubella – the “R” and MMR. Investigators inject the virus into a chicken egg, where it grows for a few days before the fluid inside the egg is harvested for research purposes.

If you’ve taken a child to a pediatrician for their MMR vaccine, they’ve benefited from research like this. The first rubella vaccine was licensed in 1969, just two years after this picture was taken.

You can read more about the importance of vaccines and get the facts about the MMR vaccine.

-By Andy Phifer

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