This is a historic week when in 1954, the Salk polio vaccine field trials involving 1.8 million children were conducted, which used for the first time the now-standard double-blind method, where neither the patient nor attending doctor knew if the inoculation was the vaccine or a placebo.

One year later, researchers announced the vaccine was safe and effective and it quickly saved millions of lives from the highly contagious and crippling polio disease. This medical cure-all became a reality because of the field trial.

Over 2,000 years ago, Hippocrates wrote, "Medicine is of all the Arts the most noble." Advances in therapeutic practices have been helping cure and manage illness since ancient times, and today, researchers continue to look for ways of eradicating diseases and improving our well being and quality of life, but only because of clinical studies and tests.

Every year, specialists in all areas of medical research conduct new studies and clinical trials that bring us a better understanding of the possible cures from the different cancers to infectious viruses like the COVID-19 coronavirus.

In the near future, I'll be talking about and spotlighting one of North America's leading clinical research groups that's based nearby. Without research companies who conduct clinical trials, we will never find out if there's a cure for something. To search for available trials, go online to clinicaltrials.gov.

Phil Paleologos is the host of The Phil Paleologos Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. Contact him at phil@wbsm.com and follow him on Twitter @PhilPaleologos. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

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