America’s biopharmaceutical companies are currently developing 271 vaccines to prevent and treat conditions including infectious diseases, cancer and neurological disorders, according to a new report by the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA).
Vaccines have been used to successfully prevent infectious diseases such as smallpox, measles and polio. According to data from the CDC, 10 infectious diseases have been at least 90% eradicated in the U.S. as a result of vaccines.
“Biopharmaceutical research companies are working to apply new scientific approaches to the development of both preventative and therapeutic vaccines,” said PhRMA president and chief executive officer John J. Castellani. “The nearly 300 vaccines in the pipeline provide hope for protecting and improving public health in the U.S. and across the globe.”
The 271 vaccines in development span a wide array of diseases, and employ new scientific strategies and technologies. These potential vaccines, all in human clinical trials or under review by the FDA, include 137 for infectious diseases, 99 for cancer, 15 for allergies and 10 for neurological disorders.
There are 204 active clinical trials for vaccines in the U.S., including 107 that have not yet started recruiting patients or are just now seeking volunteers to participate.
These trials, in combination with the new scientific approaches researchers are using, build on the successful history of vaccination against infectious diseases. For example, advances in areas such as genomics are enabling researchers to develop therapeutic vaccines, including immunotherapies for some types of cancer and other diseases. In addition, vaccines are not limited to injectables; new delivery methods include nasal sprays, powders and transdermal applications.