A survey of mechanisms underlying current and potential COVID-19 vaccines

Christian Hebel, Allan Randrup Thomsen

1 Citationer (Scopus)


The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 caught the world off guard resulting in a global health crisis. Even though COVID-19 have caused the death of millions of people and many countries are still battling waves of infections, the odds of the pandemic ending soon have turned significantly in our favor. The key has been the development and distribution of a broad range of vaccines in record time. In this survey, we summarize the immunology required to understand the mechanisms underlying current and potential COVID-19 vaccines. Furthermore, we provide an up to date (according to data from WHO May 27, 2022) overview of the vaccine landscape consisting of 11 approved vaccines in phase 4, and a pipeline consisting of 161 vaccine candidates in clinical development and 198 in preclinical development (World Health Organization, Draft landscape and tracker of COVID-19 candidate vaccines [Internet], WHO, 2022). Our focus is to provide an understanding of the underlying biological mode of action of different vaccine platform designs, their advantages and disadvantages, rather than a deep dive into safety and efficacy data. We further present arguments concerning why a broad range of vaccines are needed and discuss future challenges.

TidsskriftAPMIS - Journal of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology
Udgave nummer2
Sider (fra-til)37-60
Antal sider24
StatusUdgivet - feb. 2023


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