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Nat Rev Immunol. 2007 Apr;7(4):267-78.

Scientific barriers to developing vaccines against avian influenza viruses.

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Laboratory of Infectious Diseases, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland 20892, USA.


The increasing number of reports of direct transmission of avian influenza viruses to humans underscores the need for control strategies to prevent an influenza pandemic. Vaccination is the key strategy to prevent severe illness and death from pandemic influenza. Despite long-term experience with vaccines against human influenza viruses, researchers face several additional challenges in developing human vaccines against avian influenza viruses. In this Review, we discuss the features of avian influenza viruses, the gaps in our understanding of infections caused by these viruses in humans and of the immune response to them that distinguishes them from human influenza viruses, and the current status of vaccine development.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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