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Innovative Vaccines: Tackling Infectious Diseases and Emerging Threats

Innovative Vaccines: Tackling Infectious Diseases and Emerging Threats
Reported by
Rebecca Vaadia

Posted July 24, 2019

Rebecca Vaadia is a PhD candidate in neuroscience and a science communicator in New York.

Presented By


While the development of vaccines against infectious diseases has had a profound impact on life expectancy, there remain many resistant and emerging infections for which no effective vaccines are available, such as malaria, HIV, and Zika. Recent advances in biotechnology and our understanding of human immunity hold great promise for conquering new diseases. For example, advances in structural biology allow for the discovery of new antigens that can target broad viral families, such as influenza, or complex parasites like malaria. Novel clinical trials for maternal immunizations have shown encouraging results for reducing dangerous diseases in newborn infants. Furthermore, recent progress in DNA- or RNA-based vaccines holds promise for inexpensive and fast production, which is especially favorable for responding to emerging epidemics. Learn more about recent breakthroughs in vaccine development in this summary of our May 20, 2019 symposium, which gathered the world’s leaders in vaccine development.

Symposium Highlights:

  • Emerging infectious diseases can be treated quickly with a passive vaccine containing human monoclonal antibodies isolated from the blood of an infected patient.
  • Targeting multiple stages of the malaria life cycle is a promising strategy for the development of a successful vaccine targeting this complex parasite.
  • Clinical trials show promise for maternal immunizations in protecting newborn infants from respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and Group B streptococcus.
  • A vaccine containing the influenza hemagglutinin (HA) fusion protein without the head domain can elicit protection against a broad group of influenza viruses.
  • Synthetic DNA and mRNA vaccines are simple to manufacture and show promise for treating a wide range of diseases, including Ebola, HIV, Zika, influenza, and malaria.
  • A promising new adjuvant, AS01, has contributed to breakthrough vaccines for Malaria, tuberculosis, and shingles.
New Approaches for Understanding the Immune System for Vaccine Development
Taking on the Big Challenges Facing Novel Vaccine Development
Vaccines to Protect Newborns: The Next Frontier
New Technologies for Vaccine Development