These contain pathogens that can still reproduce, are “viable” but whose pathogenic properties have bred out. These are also known as attenuated pathogens. Examples are vaccines against mumps, measles, and rubella.
These vaccine contains killed pathogens. Pathogens that are no longer capable of reproducing. These include containing only components or individual molecules of these pathogens. Depending on the production method and the degree of purification, they referred to as whole-virus, split-virus, or subunit vaccines. Examples are vaccines against hepatitis A (whole virus) and influenza (split and subunit vaccines).
These consist of viruses that are harmless to humans, the so called vectors. The vectors have no or only a very limited ability to multiply in humans. In order for the human immune system to build up defenses against the pathogen, it must come into contact with molecules (antigens) of the pathogen. This can be achieved in several ways.
Either a molecule from the viral envelope of the vector can be exchanged for a molecule from the envelope of the pathogen in a vector or the vector contains the information for the assembly of one or more protein molecules (antigens) of the pathogen. This information is then read in the human cell, the antigen of the pathogen is produced and presented to the immune system. Thus, the immune response desired in vaccination is triggered.
During these modifications of the vector, taking care maintained its harmlessness to humans and the environment.
An example of vector vaccines is the vaccine “Ervebo” against Ebola.
With these vaccines, no pathogens or their components (antigens) are required for immunization. The vaccine passes the information to the cell of muscle tissue to produce the individual antigens in the form of mRNA (messenger RNA). Similar to an infection with a virus, the cell begins to produce proteins according to the blueprint of the mRNA, which are presented to the immune system as antigens to trigger the immune response. Since only single proteins are produced by the cells, there is no risk of infection with this method.
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