Vectors, Adjuvants & Delivery Systems

A vaccine adjuvant is an ingredient of a vaccine that helps create a stronger immune response in the patient’s body.  In other words, adjuvants help vaccines work better. Some vaccines made from weakened or dead germs contain naturally occurring adjuvants and help the body produce a strong protective immune response. However, most vaccines developed today include just small components of germs, such as their proteins, rather than the entire virus or bacteria. These vaccines often must be made with adjuvants to ensure the body produces an immune response strong enough to protect the patient from the germ he or she is being vaccinated against. Aluminum gels or aluminum salts are vaccine ingredients that have been used in vaccines since the 1930s.  Small amounts of aluminum are added to help the body build stronger immunity against the germ in the vaccine. Aluminum is one of the most common metals found in nature and is present in air, food, and water. The amount of aluminum present in vaccines is low and is regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

 

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