4. Understanding the Mucosal Immune System for Better Mucosal Vaccine Design

  1. W. John W. Morrow PhD, DSc, FRCPath2,
  2. Nadeem A. Sheikh PhD3,
  3. Clint S. Schmidt PhD4 and
  4. D. Huw Davies PhD5
  1. Janine Bilsborough PhD and
  2. Joanne L. Viney PhD

Published Online: 20 JUN 2012

DOI: 10.1002/9781118345313.ch4

Vaccinology: Principles and Practice

Vaccinology: Principles and Practice

How to Cite

Bilsborough, J. and Viney, J. L. (2012) Understanding the Mucosal Immune System for Better Mucosal Vaccine Design, in Vaccinology: Principles and Practice (eds W. J. W. Morrow, N. A. Sheikh, C. S. Schmidt and D. H. Davies), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781118345313.ch4

Editor Information

  1. 2

    Seattle, WA, USA

  2. 3

    Dendreon Corporation, Seattle, WA, USA

  3. 4

    NovaDigm Therapeutics, Inc., Grand Forks, ND, USA

  4. 5

    University of California at Irvine, Irvine, CA, USA

Author Information

  1. Inflammation Research, Amgen, Thousand Oaks, CA, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 20 JUN 2012
  2. Published Print: 3 AUG 2012

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405185745

Online ISBN: 9781118345313



  • mucosal immunity;
  • tolerance;
  • mucosal vaccines;
  • gut;
  • intestinal tract;
  • urogenital tract;
  • lung


Administration of vaccines via the mucosal surfaces (oral, intranasal, or urogenital) offers the promise of inducing efficient defense against microbial pathogens that gain entry via the mucosal surfaces, including influenza, HIV, hepatitis, and enteric pathogens. Moreover, vaccination at these mucosal sites is expected to provide a simplified mode of vaccine delivery with no need for sterilized syringes or trained personnel, and represents a modality in which mass immunization would be possible in the face of pandemics and epidemics. However, due to the excessive amount of antigenic material to which mucosal surfaces are normally exposed, the mucosal immune system has developed strategies to minimize unnecessary immune responsiveness to antigens introduced to mucosal surfaces. Such strategic maneuvering by the mucosal immune system has resulted in mechanisms that have introduced significant barriers to the effectiveness of mucosal vaccines. Understanding these potential barriers in the context of mucosal vaccine design is important to the development of more effective vaccines for the future.