Vaccines are responsible for some of the world's greatest public health triumphs. In the past decade, vaccines against leading killer diseases have been introduced, and more are on the way. But funding is tight, and unfounded doubts about the safety of vaccines persist. Nature explores the social and scientific challenges facing this key weapon in the twenty-first century's medical armoury.

Image credit: Bloch


  • Modern heroes

    The great achievements of vaccines are not consigned to the past.

    Nature 473, 420 ( )


  • Polio clings on in Pakistan

    Fears grow that health-service reforms may let virus flourish, just as the global eradication effort reaches its endgame.

    Nature 473, 427-428 ( )


  • The case of measles

    Vaccination campaigns against measles have had dramatic results - but eradicating the disease is still a distant prospect.

    Nature 473, 434-435 ( )

  • His best shot

    Can Bruce Walker transform HIV vaccine research?

    Nature 473, 439-441 ( )


  • Target the fence-sitters

    Past waves of vaccine rejection in industrialized nations have a lot to teach us about preventing future ones, argues Julie Leask.

    Nature 473, 443-445 ( )

  • Lessons from polio eradication

    Ridding the world of polio requires a global initiative that tailors strategies to communities, say Heidi J. Larson and Isaac Ghinai.

    Nature 473, 446-447 ( )

News & Views

  • Persistence pays off

    Developing AIDS vaccines has been a frustrating business. A vaccine that triggers immune responses that effectively control early infection by the simian counterpart of HIV in macaques seems promising.

    Nature 473, 456-457 ( )

Current Research