T cell vaccinology: exploring the known unknowns

Vaccine. 2013 Jan 2;31(2):297-305. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2012.10.096. Epub 2012 Nov 6.


The objective of modern vaccine development is the safe generation of protective long-term immune memory, both prophylactic and therapeutic. Live attenuated vaccines generate potent cellular and humoral immunity [1-3], but numerous problems exist with these vaccines, ranging from production and storage issues to adverse reactions and reversion to virulence. Subunit vaccines are safer, more stable, and more amenable to mass production. However the protection they produce is frequently inferior to live attenuated vaccines and is typically confined to humoral, and not cellular immunity. Unfortunately, there are presently no subunit vaccines available clinically that are effective at eliciting cellular responses let alone cellular memory [4]. This article will provide and overview of areas of investigation that we see as important for the development of vaccines with the capacity to induce robust and enduring cellular immune responses.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Cellular / immunology
  • Immunity, Humoral / immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • Vaccines / adverse effects
  • Vaccines / immunology*
  • Vaccines, Subunit / immunology


  • Vaccines
  • Vaccines, Subunit