Vaccines to Watch in 2024

Drug Topics JournalDrug Topics March 2024
Volume 168
Issue 02

Moderna, Merck, and Pfizer-BioNTech are leading the charge with new vaccines for respiratory viruses in development.

Public attitudes toward vaccination have become increasingly complex in recent years. Factors such as vaccine fatigue and misinformation—which began circulating during the COVID-19 pandemic and has persisted—have eroded trust in vaccination, making some individuals hesitant to roll up their sleeves. Some who had previously relied on vaccine regimens began to question their value, increasing skepticism and causing a dip in vaccine uptake.

Amid these challenges, 2024 offers hope: Pharmaceutical research and development teams are pioneering new vaccines that leverage messenger RNA (mRNA) technology, expand protection to vulnerable populations, and streamline the vaccination process—efforts that may help mend ongoing divides. Here is a look at some of the most anticipated vaccine developments in 2024.

READ MORE: Immunization Resource Center

1. The power of mRNA. Moderna. Accessed February 14, 2024. 
2. Moderna announces first participants dosed in phase 3 study of seasonal influenza vaccine candidate (mRNA-1010). News release. Moderna. June 7, 2022. Accessed February 14, 2024.
3. Moderna expands the field of mRNA medicine with positive clinical results across cancer, rare disease, and infectious disease. News release. Moderna. September 13, 2023. Accessed February 14, 2024.
4. Bancel S. Moderna 2023 shareholder letter. Moderna. January 2, 2024. Accessed February 14, 2024.
5. FDA grants priority review to Merck’s new biologics license application for V116, an investigational, 21-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine specifically designed to protect adults. News release. Merck. December 19, 2023. Accessed February 14, 2024. 
6. Merck’s V116, an investigational, 21-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine specifically designed to protect adults, demonstrated superior immunogenicity for 10 of 11 unique serotypes compared to PCV20 in adults 50 years of age and older. News release. Merck. November 28, 2023. Accessed February 14, 2023. 
7. Pfizer and BioNTech receive US FDA fast track designation for single-dose mRNA-based vaccine candidate against COVID-19 and influenza. News release. Pfizer. December 9, 2022. Accessed February 14, 2024. 
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