Current biodefense vaccine programs and challenges

Hum Vaccin Immunother. 2013 Jul;9(7):1591-7. doi: 10.4161/hv.24063. Epub 2013 Feb 21.


The Defense Threat Reduction Agency's Joint Science and Technology Office manages the Chemical and Biological Defense Program's Science and Technology portfolio. The Joint Science and Technology Office's mission is to invest in transformational ideas, innovative people and actionable technology development for Chemical and Biological Defense solutions, with the primary goal to deliver Science and Technology products and capabilities to the warfighter and civilian population that outpace the threat. This commentary focuses on one thrust area within this mission: the Vaccine program of the Joint Science and Technology Office's Translational Medical Division. Here, we will describe candidate vaccines currently in the S&T pipeline, enabling technologies that should facilitate advanced development of these candidates into FDA licensed vaccines, and how the ever-changing biological threat landscape impacts the future of biodefense vaccines.

Keywords: Biodefense; Pathogen; Vaccine; alphavirus; anthrax; filovirus; glanders; melioidosis; ricin; tularemia.

MeSH terms

  • Bacterial Toxins / immunology
  • Bacterial Toxins / toxicity
  • Biological Warfare / prevention & control*
  • Biological Warfare Agents*
  • Drug Discovery
  • Encephalitis, Viral / immunology
  • Encephalitis, Viral / prevention & control
  • Encephalitis, Viral / virology
  • Hemorrhagic Fevers, Viral / immunology
  • Hemorrhagic Fevers, Viral / prevention & control
  • Hemorrhagic Fevers, Viral / virology
  • Humans
  • Pandemics / prevention & control*
  • United States
  • United States Department of Defense
  • Vaccines*


  • Bacterial Toxins
  • Biological Warfare Agents
  • Vaccines