Keeping the Memory of Smallpox Virus

Cell Mol Life Sci. 2006 Oct;63(19-20):2249-59. doi: 10.1007/s00018-006-6313-2.


Smallpox virus eradication was one of the greatest successes of the 20th century. Moreover, the quest to combat its use in biological warfare, has fueled efforts to understand residual immune memory and to develop new animal models by the scientific community. Although the literature is full of animal studies of vaccinia virus infection, continuing efforts have helped to increase our knowledge regarding humoral and cellular memory to non-persistent pathogens and to study factors that might influence further vaccination strategies in humans. In addition, the potent immunostimulatory action of poxvirus vectors has led to development and evaluation of new-generation vaccine candidates, which will be discussed in this review.

Publication types

  • Historical Article
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • B-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • History, 20th Century
  • Humans
  • Immunodominant Epitopes / immunology
  • Immunologic Memory*
  • Smallpox / history
  • Smallpox / immunology*
  • Smallpox / prevention & control
  • Smallpox Vaccine / immunology*
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Variola virus / immunology*
  • Variola virus / pathogenicity


  • Immunodominant Epitopes
  • Smallpox Vaccine