Is there any difference between vaccines for viruses and vaccines for bacteria?


If there’s any, what is it? how would a vaccine for a virus work?

In: Biology

Bacteria are alive, and will actively fight back against your immune system. You can try to vaccinate against them by putting their cell markers into the system, but this often isn’t as effective or long lasting as anti-virus vaccines.

Viruses are more like biological land mines than enemy soldiers – you can tip off the immune system early to what their markers look like and will usually have very high immunization success rates. They rely on being undetected until the infection has progressed significantly and can’t actively fight off attacking immune cells.

Vaccines for both use dead or badly damaged cells/surface markers to “teach” your immune system how to identify them.

Vaccines for viruses already exist

Hepatitis and MMR vaccines are for viruses. So is the annual flu shot.

These vaccines can be live viruses with the deadly parts removed or killed viruses. We give these so that the body knows what they look like in case they do show up for real.

There is one HUGE difference. Vaccines for viruses are a thing that exists. Where as Vaccines for bacteria do not.