Aluminium adjuvants--in retrospect and prospect

Vaccine. 2004 Sep 9;22(27-28):3658-68. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2004.03.032.


Aluminium compounds have been used as adjuvants in practical vaccination for more than 60 years to induce an early, an efficient and a long lasting protective immunity and are at present the most widely used adjuvants in both veterinary and human vaccines. Although the last two decades of systematic research into the nature of these adjuvants has contributed significantly to understanding their nature and their limitations as Th2 stimulators the more detailed mode of action of these adjuvants is still not completely understood. We have a comprehensive record of their behaviour and performance in practical vaccination, but an empirical approach to optimising their use in new vaccine formulations is still to some extent a necessity. The aim of the present review is to put the recent findings into a broader perspective to facilitate the application of these adjuvants in general and experimental vaccinology.

Publication types

  • Historical Article
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adjuvants, Immunologic / administration & dosage
  • Adjuvants, Immunologic / chemistry
  • Adjuvants, Immunologic / history
  • Adjuvants, Immunologic / pharmacology*
  • Aluminum Compounds / administration & dosage
  • Aluminum Compounds / chemistry
  • Aluminum Compounds / history
  • Aluminum Compounds / pharmacology*
  • Animals
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • History, 20th Century
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin E / analysis
  • Immunoglobulin E / biosynthesis


  • Adjuvants, Immunologic
  • Aluminum Compounds
  • Immunoglobulin E