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If, after reading my story today on the biotech industry’s aversion to social media, you are looking for a science organization that has embraced the new media landscape, look no further than the granddaddy of them all.

Salk Institute for Biological Studies has launched PolioToday.org, a site dedicated to sufferers of post-polio syndrome. The site includes videos, resource links and a real-time forum for former polio patients who have the syndrome, which is characterized by extreme fatigue and limb weakness.

Salk spokesman Mauricio Minotta said traffic on the site, which has not been written about in the mainstream media, has come largely via the institute’s Twitter account and Facebook page.

“We are attracting an audience to our page that already has a built-in interest in our work,” Minotta said.

The cause is of course near and dear to the institute, which was founded in 1960 by Dr. Jonas Salk, who developed the first safe and effective polio vaccine.

DAVID WASHBURN

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