• Entry
  • Reader's guide
  • Entries A-Z
  • Subject index

Jenner, Edward (1749–1823)

  • In: Encyclopedia of Epidemiology
  • Edited by: Sarah Boslaugh
  • Subject:Public Health (general), Public Health Research Methods , Epidemiology & Biostatistics

Edward Jenner is best known as the inventor of the smallpox vaccination. Although little of the basic science of the smallpox virus or human immunity was known at the time, Jenner tested a hypothesis formulated by epidemiologic observation in a clinical trial (with an n of 1) and established its validity. His research provided the model for the next 150 years of human medical research.

Jenner was born, and spent most of his career as a country doctor, in the English county of Gloucestershire. Orphaned at age 5, he was sent to boarding school at age 8, where he was inoculated with smallpox and reportedly traumatized by the experience. At the age of 12, he began surgical training.

Jenner observed that most milkmaids and cowmen did not ...

Loading
  • Loading...
locked icon

Sign in to access this content

Get a 30 day FREE TRIAL

  • Watch videos from a variety of sources bringing classroom topics to life
  • Read modern, diverse business cases
  • Explore hundreds of books and reference titles