Universal Vaccines against Influenza Viruses: Overview of the Past, Present, and Prospective
Keywords:Influenza, Vaccine, Universal Influenza Vaccine
Influenza is a common disease caused by influenza virus infections. There are an estimated 3 to 5 million annual cases of severe illness and 290 000 to 650 000 respiratory deaths caused by influenza virus infections worldwide (1). Transmission can occur in three ways: direct contact with an infected person, through fomites, or by inhaling aerosolized infectious particles (2). Systemic manifestations of uncomplicated influenza include fever, fatigue, and headaches, and symptoms of upper respiratory tract infection including sore throat, nasal discharge, and non-productive cough (3). Although antiviral drugs are available to treat influenza, vaccination remains the best way to prevent infection. This article will provide an overview of influenza virus biology, as well as current methods and those in development to treat and prevent influenza.