Bioinformatics Data Hub Project

Universal Influenza Vaccine Initiative (UIVI)

Building the basis for better defenses against influenza.

Background

The third program of the Human Vaccines Project is the Universal Influenza Vaccine Initiative, with the purpose to understand the underlying immune mechanisms involved in the response to influenza in order to facilitate the research and development of universal influenza vaccines. Because current seasonal influenza vaccines are consistently ineffective due to antigenic drift, and because the potential for pandemic influenza outbreaks remains a threat, the UIVI has begun planning experimental clinical trials designed to increase our understanding of the mechanisms that underlie the immune response to initial influenza exposure (infant cohort) and more fully elucidate the mechanisms of how B and T cell memory responses (older adults) affect subsequent responses to influenza immunization. The information gained by conducting these experimental influenza trials that will also involve in-patient challenge studies, which are desperately needed if we are to make any significant gains in the development of a vaccine that will be broadly efficacious in all populations, regardless of previous influenza exposures.