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Influenza Virus Vaccine Development

Influenza Virus Vaccine Development

Amid the ongoing COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, influenza virus remains a major threat to public health due to its potential to cause seasonal and cyclical pandemics with significant morbidity worldwide and mortality. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), seasonal influenza affects 5-10% of the global population each year, resulting in 3-5 million hospitalizations and approximately 500,000 deaths.

Types of Influenza Virus

Influenza virus belongs to the Orthomyxoviridae family and comprise negative-sense, single stranded, segmented RNA genome. Influenza virus causes acute upper respiratory tract infection in patients and spreads rapidly through the air, causing periodic influenza pandemics around the world. There are four types of influenza viruses: A, B, C, and D. Influenza A virus (IAV) and B virus are clinically relevant to humans. IAVs can be further subdivided into 18 hemagglutinin (HA) and 11 neuraminidase (NA) subtypes based on the antigenic properties of surface glycoproteins. Most IAV subtypes exist in natural hosts (e.g., waterfowl, waterfowl, and other species), and only a few IAV subtypes infect humans. Because of the high mutation rate, IAV is difficult to predict, prevent or treat.

Overview of Influenza VirusOverview of Influenza Virus. (Hutchinson EC. 2018)

Influenza Vaccine

Effective vaccination is the most cost-effective measure to prevent infectious diseases, and the persistent public health threat of influenza viruses presents a need for preventive vaccines, and there are many different influenza vaccines on the market.

  • Inactivated influenza vaccine
  • Live attenuated influenza vaccine
  • Recombinant subunit vaccine
  • Influenza DNA vaccine
  • Virus like particles (VLP) vaccine
  • Universal vaccines
  • Cytotoxic T-lymphocyte-inducing vaccine
  • Influenza RNA vaccine
  • MicroRNA-based influenza vaccine
  • Exosome-based influenza vaccine

Influenza VLP Vaccine

Current inactivated, live attenuated and recombinant subunit vaccines protect against circulating, antigen matched IAV and influenza B virus strains. But with the frequent emergence of new strains, broad protection is difficult to achieve. For new strains, new antigenically matched vaccines must be developed within a short period of time. Influenza VLP vaccines can be prepared in a short period of about 4 weeks and may be more immunogenic in naive animals. Influenza VLPs can present glycoproteins in a membrane-anchored form mimicking the natural conformation of enveloped viruses. Compared with protein-based recombinant subunit vaccines, the particulate nature of VLPs can effectively stimulate antigen-presenting cells, thereby eliciting CD4 and CD8 T-cell immune responses with higher immunogenicity. In animal models, influenza VLP vaccination induces protective immune responses against seasonal, pandemic and avian influenza viruses.

Various forms of influenza vaccine.Various forms of influenza vaccine. (Keshavarz M, et al.,2019)

The routes of delivering influenza VLP vaccine include intramuscular (IM), intranasal (IN), or microneedle (MN) immunization on the skin. Vaccination of influenza VLPs via the MN skin route has important implications for improving vaccination efficiency, coverage and public health.

What Can We Do

Why Choose CD BioSciences

CD BioSciences, a biotechnology pioneer and fast-growing leading global provider of scientific research and service solutions, has grown to become one of the world's largest independent biotechnology companies, with access to millions of researchers and partners worldwide. We use our expertise and extensive experience to help our customers develop influenza virus vaccines. We are adept at customizing our services to meet the needs of our clients. If you are interested, please contact us.


  1. Hutchinson EC. Influenza Virus. Trends Microbiol. 2018, 26: 809-810.
  2. Keshavarz M.; et al., Influenza vaccine: Where are we and where do we go? Rev Med Virol. 2019, 29: 1-13.
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