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CLYDE W. TOMBAUGH, JULIUS AXELROD, ROBERT GALLO, and JAMES VAN ALLEN All four sign a First Day Cover saluting Health Research. First Day Cover signed: "Clyde W. Tombaugh", "Julius Axelrod", "James A.

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All four sign a First Day Cover saluting Health Research.
First Day Cover signed: "Clyde W. Tombaugh", "Julius Axelrod", "James A. Van Allen", and "Robert Gallo", 6½x3½, saluting Health Research, postmarked New York, New York, May 17, 1984, FIRST DAY OF ISSUE. CLYDE W. TOMBAUGH (1906-1997) was hired in 1929 as an assistant by the Lowell Observatory in New Mexico to continue the search for a planet beyond Neptune, which had been initiated by Percival Lowell. Tombaugh used a blink microscope to compare photographs of a small part of the night sky and detect the planet. After ten months of painstaking comparisons, on February 18, 1930 he found Pluto in the constellation Gemini. Some of his ashes are carried on the New Horizons spacecraft, which is traveling toward Pluto. Neuropharmacologist JULIUS AXELROD (1912-2004) shared the 1970 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine with biophysicists Bernard Katz and Ulf von Euler for his work on neurotransmitters (the chemical messengers of the brain). Axelrod wanted to know why the messengers, once transmitted, should stop operating. Through his studies he found a number of specific enzymes that rapidly degraded the neurotransmitters. Axelrod had begun his work at the National Heart Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), in 1949. Although there is contentious debate about which team of scientists first discovered HIV as the cause of AIDS in the mid-1980s, there is no doubt that Dr. ROBERT GALLO and his colleagues at the National Cancer Institute made many of the scientific discoveries which led to that breakthrough. AIDS has remained the focus of Gallo's work ever since. In 1996, he established the Institute of Human Virology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. In 2005, he was a founder of Profectus Bio Science to develop more effective anti-AIDS drugs. In 2007 Gallo and his team received a $15 million grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to develop a preventive vaccine. JAMES VAN ALLEN (1914-2006) isbest known for his work in magnetospheric physics. He developed proposals for the launch of a scientific satellite as part of the research program conducted during the International Geophysical Year of 1957-1958. The idea for the IGY, in fact, emerged from a discussion in his living room in 1950. His Explorer spacecraft, launched in 1958, returned important scientific data about the radiation belts circling the Earth, named the Van Allen Belts in his honor. Van Allen chaired the group of space scientists who recommended in 1958 that the US commit itself to a manned landing on the moon within ten years. Later, however, he came to feel that unmanned spacecraft could acquire more scientific information at a lower cost. Fine condition.

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