Now, the links are below, and you can click on them to read more, on your own. My point with this post is that many people are unaware how vaccines work, and would rather argue than learn. I have only included the most common, to keep it short. This is not a statement, of my opinion, this is “fact” as you can see by following the links.
“The human immune system is a complex network of cells and organs that evolved to fight off infectious microbes.”
Much of the immune system’s work is carried out by an army of various specialized cells, each type designed to fight disease in a particular way. The invading microbes first run into the vanguard of this army, which includes white blood cells called macrophages (literally, “big eaters”). The macrophages engulf as many of the microbes as they can.
The cells in our body have a natural ability to fight disease, and develop an immunity.
The theory behind vaccines:
“Vaccines teach the immune system to fight by mimicking a natural infection.”
For example, the yellow fever vaccine, first widely used in 1938, contains a weakened form of the virus that doesn’t cause disease or reproduce very well. Human macrophages can’t tell that the vaccine viruses are weakened, so they engulf the viruses as if they were dangerous. In the lymph nodes, the macrophages present yellow fever antigen to T cells and B cells.
A response from yellow-fever-specific T cells is activated. B cells secrete yellow fever antibodies. The weakened viruses in the vaccine are quickly eliminated. The mock infection is cleared, and humans are left with a supply of memory T and B cells for future protection against yellow fever.
Types of vaccines:
- Live, attenuated vaccines
- Inactivated vaccines
- Subunit vaccines
- Toxoid vaccines
- Conjugate vaccines
- DNA vaccines
- Recombinant vector vaccines
Live vaccines use a weakened (or attenuated) form of the germ that causes a disease.
Because these vaccines are so similar to the natural infection that they help prevent, they create a strong and long-lasting immune response. Just 1 or 2 doses of most live vaccines can give you a lifetime of protection against a germ and the disease it causes.
But live vaccines also have some limitations. For example:
Because they contain a small amount of the weakened live virus, some people should talk to their health care provider before receiving them, such as people with weakened immune systems, long-term health problems, or people who’ve had an organ transplant.
They need to be kept cool, so they don’t travel well. That means they can’t be used in countries with limited access to refrigerators.
Live vaccines are used to protect against:
- Measles, mumps, rubella (MMR combined vaccine)
- Yellow fever
Inactivated vaccines use the killed version of the germ that causes a disease.
Inactivated vaccines usually don’t provide immunity (protection) that’s as strong as live vaccines. So you may need several doses over time (booster shots) in order to get ongoing immunity against diseases.
Inactivated vaccines are used to protect against:
- Hepatitis A
- Flu (shot only)
- Polio (shot only)
Subunit, recombinant, polysaccharide, and conjugate vaccines
Because these vaccines use only specific pieces of the germ, they give a very strong immune response that’s targeted to key parts of the germ. They can also be used on almost everyone who needs them, including people with weakened immune systems and long-term health problems.
One limitation of these vaccines is that you may need booster shots to get ongoing protection against diseases.
These vaccines are used to protect against:
- Hib (Haemophilus influenzae type b) disease
- Hepatitis B
- HPV (Human papillomavirus)
- Whooping cough (part of the DTaP combined vaccine)
- Pneumococcal disease
- Meningococcal disease
“Blaming un-vaccinated people for an outbreak of measles, is ridiculous.” <<< This is my opinion.