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Edward Jenner, who was a medical doctor, observed that milkmaids in England who worked with cows and contracted the cowpox virus, did not contract the more deadly smallpox virus. There was a high mortality rate of 35% due to smallpox. However, evidence exists that during the Ming Dynasty in the 1500's in China, scabs were blown up patients' noses inducing a mild case of smallpox with immunity conferred on those patients thereafter. Although several people in England looked into a cowpox and smallpox connection, Edward Jenner actually tested his theory. He took Sarah Nelmes as a patient with cowpox and used her cowpox virus to inoculate a boy who then went on to be immune to smallpox when exposed to it. He reported his findings to the Royal Society and proceeded to do more research. He is credited for inventing a successful vaccination to the deadly smallpox virus.
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