Much new knowledge has accumulated about links between the “innate”, evolutionarily very old immune system, based largely on the recognition of pathogen-associated molecular patterns, and the “adaptive” immune system of vertebrate species. A recent revolution in understanding how to trigger the innate immune response specifically and how that may determine the course of an acquired immune response prompts the conclusion that research on adjuvants could now become more scientific and less empiric. Additionally, new insight into the biology of memory cells sets the stage for a more designed approach to stimulating long-lasting immunity.
We do not know how to deliver the antigen in order to elicit a long lasting protective response after a single dose. In particular, we do not know the rules whereby adjuvants, which strengthen the immune response, also guide it in particular directions, such as formation of high affinity antibodies, Th1 helper T lymphocytes and/or CD8+ T lymphocytes, and assure the production of long term immunologic memory.
To develop and clinically evaluate new adjuvants suitable for human use which could strengthen immune responses and guide them down chosen pathways relevant to the disease concerned in order to create vaccines that could produce specific and robust immunity after a single dose of vaccine and capable of effectively stimulating even the immune system of newborns.
- Increased effectiveness of immunization
- Decreased cost of immunization systems
- Decreased early childhood mortality and morbidity