Chasing Seasonal Influenza — The Need for a Universal Influenza Vaccine

New England Journal of Medicine
January 4, 2018  Vol. 378 No. 1

Chasing Seasonal Influenza — The Need for a Universal Influenza Vaccine
Catharine I. Paules, M.D., Sheena G. Sullivan, M.P.H., Ph.D., Kanta Subbarao, M.B., B.S., M.P.H., and Anthony S. Fauci, M.D.
[Closing text]
… However imperfect, though, current influenza vaccines remain a valuable public health tool, and it is always better to get vaccinated than not to get vaccinated. In this regard, the CDC estimates that influenza vaccination averted 40,000 deaths in the United States between the 2005–2006 and 2013–2014 seasons.2 Yet we can do better. Although targeted research to improve current vaccine antigens, platforms, and manufacturing strategies may in the short term lead to enhanced effectiveness of seasonal influenza vaccines, to achieve the ultimate objective of a universal influenza vaccine, a broad range of expertise and substantial resources will be required to fill gaps in our knowledge and develop a transformative approach to influenza-vaccine design.5