The early-life gut microbiome and vaccine efficacy

Anne Jordan, Simon R. Carding, Lindsay J. Hall*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)
31 Downloads (Pure)


Vaccines are one of the greatest successes of public health, preventing millions of cases of disease and death in children each year. However, the efficacy of many vaccines can vary greatly between infants from geographically and socioeconomically distinct locations. Differences in the composition of the intestinal microbiome have emerged as one of the main factors that can account for variations in immunisation outcomes. In this Review, we assess the influence of the gut microbiota upon early life immunity, focusing on two important members of the microbiota with health-promoting and immunomodulatory properties: Bifidobacterium and Bacteroides. Additionally, we discuss their immune stimulatory microbial properties, interactions with the host, and their effect on vaccine responses and efficacy in infants. We also provide an overview of current microbiota-based approaches to enhance vaccine outcomes, and describe novel microbe-derived components that could lead to safer, more effective vaccines and vaccine adjuvants.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e787-e794
Number of pages8
JournalThe Lancet Microbe
Issue number10
Early online date8 Sept 2022
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
LJH is supported by Wellcome Trust Investigator Awards (100974/C/13/Z and 220876/Z/20/Z). LJH and SRC are also supported by Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), Institute Strategic Programme Gut Microbes and Health (BB/R012490/1) and its constituent projects (BBS/E/F/000PR10353, BBS/E/F/000PR10355, and BBS/E/F/000PR10356), and a BBSRC Norwich Research Park Bioscience Doctoral Training grant (BB/M011216/1; supervisors LJH and SRC, student AJ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an Open Access article under the CC BY 4.0 license

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Virology


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