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Research Activities

Research is essential to prepare for a pandemic. Research on flu viruses leads to a better understanding of how flu viruses spread and change over time. New ways to prevent and treat flu, including how to best use vaccines and antiviral medications, will come from this research.

General Research Activities 

Virus Research

 Vaccine Research

  • FDA Approves FluBlok: First Flu Vaccine Made Using Recombinant DNA Technology
    On January 16, 2013, the FDA approved FluBlok, a novel flu vaccine made using recombinant DNA technology that does not involve using eggs or the actual influenza virus. FluBlok will be approved for use in adults 18-49 years-old.
  • FDA Approves First Seasonal Influenza Vaccine Manufactured Using Cell Culture Technology
    On November 19, 2012 the FDA announced the approval of Flucelvax, the first flu vaccine licensed in the U.S. produced using cultured animal cells, instead of fertilized chicken eggs. Flucelvax is approved to prevent seasonal flu in people ages 18 years and older.
  • HHS Support Results in International Influenza Vaccine Milestone
    Thailand has begun a phase 1 clinical trial to test an H5N1 avian, or bird, influenza vaccine in a needle-free, nasal spray form. This trial is a result of international collaboration with health agencies around the world, including the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA). This is the first step in testing the new vaccine in humans. The study and data analysis is expected to be complete by May 2013.
  • Clinical Trial of HHS-Supported Flu Vaccine Begins in Vietnam
    Vietnam has begun a phase 1 clinical trial for the first H1N1 pandemic influenza vaccine developed entirely in Vietnam with support from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA). This is the first step in testing the new vaccine in humans. The study and data analysis is expected to be complete by the end of 2012.
  • FDA Approves First Quadrivalent Vaccine to Prevent Seasonal Influenza
    FluMist Quadrivalent, a vaccine to prevent seasonal flu, has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. This is the first flu vaccine to contain four strains of the influenza virus, two influenza A strains and two influenza B strains.
  • NIH Experts Describe Influenza Vaccines of the Future
    Licensed seasonal flu vaccines’ effectiveness depends on how well the viruses included in the vaccine match the viruses circulating that year. Scientists supported by NIAID are working to develop new technologies and vaccines to better protect people from flu viruses.
  • NIH Scientists Advance Universal Flu Vaccine  
    These NIAID experiments tested a two-step approach to giving flu vaccines.
  • Initiative for Vaccine Research
    The World Health Organization's (WHO) initiative for vaccine research guides, supports, and facilitates the development, clinical evaluation, and world-wide access to safe, effective, and affordable vaccines against infectious diseases.

Personal Protective Equipment 

Prediction/Modeling

Learning from the Past

Technology Transfer

  • Influenza Technologies Available for Product Development
    Each year, hundreds of new inventions are developed in NIH and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) laboratories. This NIH Office of Technology Transfer database provides a list of inventions available for further research and development.

H1N1 (Swine Flu) Specific Research

H5N1 (Avian Flu) Specific Research 

H5N1: Virus Research

H5N1: Learning from the Past