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Population biology, evolution, and immunology of vaccination and vaccination programs.

Abstract

The purpose of prophylactic vaccination is to reduce morbidity and mortality in a population. Many questions related to the design of vaccines and vaccination programs require a population standpoint for their sharp formulation and laboratory and field studies to understand their immunologic background. Practical suggestions of the workshop included increased studies of age-specific immunity, better immunoepidemiologic surveillance, better design of efficacy studies, and more systematic sampling of parasite strains to study the evolutionary pressure exerted by vaccines. Theoretical immunology has much to contribute. One of the realizations of the workshop was the value of a strong interdisciplinary approach in vaccine development, utilizing relevant contributions from immunology, population biology, mathematical modeling, epidemiology, molecular biology, and virology.

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