Tuesday, March 21, 2023

What Is In A Flu Vaccine Ingredient List

An Active Ingredient Provides Immunity

Good Question: What is in the flu shot?

The active ingredient of a vaccine is a harmless form of the bacteria or virus, which cannot cause disease. Vaccines contain a very small amount of an active ingredient, just a few micrograms per vaccine. The role of the active ingredient is to introduce antigens, which are unique features of the bacteria or virus, to your immune system. This induces a specific immune response in your body without making you sick. The immune system remembers the antigen so if you encounter the real bacteria or virus in the future, your body is ready to quickly respond before you become unwell. This is called immunity.

For vaccines that are approved for use in humans, the active ingredient is either the whole bacteria or virus, which has been killed or greatly weakened , or broken-down parts of the bacteria or virus . A new type of vaccine is made from genetic material that contains information for the body to produce small amounts of the antigen protein at the site of injection. Vaccines in development against COVID-19 are exploring all types of active ingredient delivery methods, but the most common type are RNA vaccines.

Is The Flu Vaccine Safe

The CDC recommends that everyone aged six months and older get vaccinated against the flu each year, noting that it’s “the best way to reduce your chances of getting the seasonal flu and spreading it to others.”

And yes, experts agree, the flu vaccine is safe. Unless you have an allergy to any of the components, the flu vaccine is very safe, Alan says. And, because it comes up every year, Alan notes that, you cannot get the influenza virus from the injected form of the flu vaccine.

Dr. Adalja stresses the importance of getting your seasonal flu vaccine. The seasonal flu vaccine is the best way to keep yourself safe against influenza, he says. It is highly effective at preventing the severe complications of influenza, particularly death.

If you have any questions about the seasonal flu vaccine or its ingredients, talk to your doctor. They should be able to help address your concerns.

Scientists Are Starting To Wonder Whether They Can Come Up With Something Better Than Those Accidental Adjuvants

One way MF59 is thought to work is by triggering the release of chemokines signalling chemicals by nearby cells, which then encourage other cells to produce yet more chemokines. Eventually, this cascade attracts immune cells, which ingest the vaccine including recognisable parts of the pathogen it protects against and transport the lot to the lymph nodes, which filter pathogens out of the body and help to identify infections.

The next generation

In the vaccine industry, people are very conservative, says Sun. So whenever they try to find an adjuvant for a new type of vaccine, most of the ones under investigation are the traditional ones, which we know are safe and effective.

However, scientists are starting to wonder whether they can come up with something better than those accidental adjuvants from the 1920s and 1950s, discovered before the structure of DNA was known, or man had set foot on the Moon, when computers either didnt exist or were the size of a house.

Vaccines could be made using parts of bacteria such as salmonella

This is particularly important, because of a tragic irony: people who are the most vulnerable to infections also tend to have the weakest responses to vaccines. For example, one flu vaccine was 58% effective at preventing hospitalisation in frail people over the age of 65, but 77.6% effective in those who were not.

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Main Ingredients In An Influenza Vaccine

Influenza Viruses: It may seem counterproductive, but the vaccine contains small amounts of the viruses it protects against. The influenza viruses contained in the shot are pandemic A , influenza A , and one or two influenza B strains. Some vaccines contain three viruses or all four . Having the viruses in the vaccine, helps trigger a persons immune system to produce antibodies to fight against the virus. The exact viruses included in the vaccine can differ slightly from year to year in order to provide the greatest chance of efficacy.

Formaldehyde: Toxic and potentially lethal in higher doses, the amount of formaldehyde found in flu vaccines is so small that it is harmless. Formaldehydes role in the vaccine is to make toxins from viruses and bacteria inactive so that they do not contaminate the vaccine during production.

Thimerosal: A preservative that helps keep the vaccine free of bacterial and fungal contamination that could otherwise thrive in in a multi-dose vial. The benefit of our practice is that Heritage uses syringes instead of Multidose vials so the vaccines we provide are FREE from preservatives. Made of an organic form of mercury , thimerosal is safe and typically only remains in the blood for a few days. Since our Vaccines DO NOT carry this preservative there is no worry about being exposed to this substance.

Preservatives And Stabilisers Keep The Vaccine Clean And Effective

Flu shot ingredients: What they contain and why

Very small amounts of preservatives and stabilisers are used in vaccines to maintain quality and ensure the vaccine is safe to be transported and stored. These ingredients are often naturally found in the body or in food at much higher levels than in a vaccine. Preservatives are added to vaccines to prevent unwanted contamination, much like theyre used in food products to stop them from spoiling. Stabilisers are also used in vaccines to stop the components separating or sticking to the vial during transportation and storage.

Sorbitol is a sweet carbohydrate and is used in some vaccines to prevent the particles settling and clumping. Its naturally found in fruit a peach contains almost one hundred times more sorbitol than a vaccine.

Gelatine is used in some live vaccines, such as the shingles vaccine, to prevent the vaccine components separating and so the virus in the vaccine isnt affected by heat during transport and storage. The gelatine used in vaccines is derived from pigs but is highly purified and broken down into very small molecules so that no pig DNA remains. Members of some faiths may however be concerned about using vaccines containing pig-derived gelatine. According to Jewish laws, porcine products in non-oral products, including vaccines, cause no concern.6 Similarly, many Muslim leaders have ruled that the presence of gelatine in vaccines does not break religious dietary laws due to its high purification and non-oral administration.6

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Ii3 Vaccine Products Authorized For Use In Canada

This section describes the influenza vaccine products that are authorized for use in Canada for the 2020-2021 season. All influenza vaccines available in Canada have been authorized by Health Canada. However, not all products authorized for use are necessarily available in the marketplace. The vaccine manufacturers determine whether they will make any or all of their products available in a given market. Provincial and territorial health authorities then determine which of the products available for purchase will be used in their respective publicly funded influenza immunization programs and for which population groups.

The antigenic characteristics of circulating influenza virus strains provide the basis for selecting the strains included in each year’s vaccine. Vaccine selection by the WHO generally occurs more than 6 months prior to the start of the influenza season to allow time for the vaccine manufacturers to produce the required quantity of vaccine. All manufacturers that distribute influenza vaccine products in Canada confirm to Health Canada that the vaccines to be marketed in Canada for the upcoming influenza season contain the WHO’s recommended antigenic strains for the Northern Hemisphere. Vaccine producers may use antigenically equivalent strains because of their growth properties.

Standard-dose inactivated influenza vaccine

Both trivalent and quadrivalent products are authorized for use in Canada.

Adjuvanted inactivated influenza vaccine

Fact Check: The Flu Vaccine Does Not Include Many Of These Supposed Ingredients

4 Min Read

An image being shared on social media gives a list of 27 ingredients with the claim that the flu vaccine contains some of them. This image is misleading many of the ingredients listed are not used in flu vaccines.

The image carries the title Flu shot ingredients, includes some of these. It then lists a wide range of items including mercury , anti-freeze, detergent, chloride, aluminium, acetone and human embryonic lung culture .

Vaccines only use ingredients they need to be as safe and effective as possible. There are several types of injected flu vaccines and every year new versions are made because the virus changes over time.

John McCauley, Director of the Worldwide Influenza Centre at the Francis Crick Institute, told Reuters: The flu vaccine made in eggs or in cell culture does not contain material from human embryonic cells, aborted human diploid cell cultures, embryonic guinea pig cells, monkey kidney cells, cow muscle tissue, E.coli, acetone or ethanol.

Anti-freeze is not used in flu vaccines, but a chemical called polyethylene glycol, which may be found in anti-freeze, is used in some vaccines to inactivate the flu virus. This chemical is safe and is also used in skin creams and some medication. The confusion is explained by the American Academy of Paediatrics here .

Some of the substances mentioned in the image do feature in the flu vaccine, but they are not dangerous.

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Iv4 Simultaneous Administration With Other Vaccines

In general, NACI recommends that two live parenteral vaccines be administered either on the same day or at least 4 weeks apart Footnote 166. This recommendation is based largely on a single study from 1965 that demonstrated immune interference between smallpox vaccine and measles vaccine administered 9-15 days apart. Subsequent studies have revealed conflicting results on immune interference between live vaccinesFootnote 167, Footnote 168, Footnote 169Footnote 170. No studies were found on potential immune interference between LAIV and other live attenuated vaccines administered within 4 weeks. A few studies on concomitant administration of LAIV3 with MMR, varicella, and oral polio vaccines did not find evidence of clinically significant immune interferenceFootnote 10, Footnote 12, Footnote 13. One study reported a statistically significant but not clinically meaningful decrease in seroresponse rates to rubella antigen when administered concomitantly with LAIV.

How To Book Your Appointment

VERIFY: What ingredients are in the COVID-19 vaccines?

If you’re eligible for a free flu vaccine, you can book an appointment at your GP surgery or a pharmacy that offers it on the NHS.

You may also get an invitation to get the vaccine, but you do not have to wait for this before booking an appointment.

Everyone who is eligible for the free flu vaccine will be able to get it.

GP surgeries and pharmacies get the flu vaccine in batches. If you cannot get an appointment straight away, ask if you can book an appointment for when more vaccines are available.

If you have an appointment for a COVID-19 booster vaccine at a GP surgery or pharmacy, you may also be offered a flu vaccine at the same time.

Do not delay booking your flu vaccine appointment so that you can get both vaccines together. Only some people will be offered both vaccines at the same time.

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Ingredients Are Used During The Production Of Vaccines

Some ingredients that are needed to produce the vaccine are no longer needed for the vaccine to work in a person.

These ingredients are taken out after production so only tiny amounts are left in the final product. The very small amounts of these ingredients that remain in the final product arent harmful.

Examples of ingredients used in some vaccines include:

  • Cell culture material , like eggs, to help grow the vaccine antigens.
  • Inactivating ingredients , like formaldehyde, to weaken or kill viruses, bacteria, or toxins in the vaccine.
  • Antibiotics , like neomycin, to help keep outside germs and bacteria from growing in the vaccine.

Who Should Not Have The Flu Vaccine

Most adults can have the flu vaccine, but you should avoid it if you have had a serious allergic reaction to a flu vaccine in the past.

You may be at risk of an allergic reaction to the flu vaccine injection if you have an egg allergy. This is because some flu vaccines are made using eggs.

Ask a GP or pharmacist for a low-egg or egg-free vaccine.

If you’re ill with a high temperature, it’s best to wait until you’re better before having the flu vaccine.

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What Is In The Influenza Vaccine

Information on specific ingredients included within individual influenza vaccines can be found on the label of the medicine, the Product Information and Consumer Medicine Information leaflets for each individual vaccine. You can ask your pharmacist for a copy or find it through our CMI database by searching the products name. The CMI provides the full list of ingredients for each product.

Additionally, information on medicines supplied in Australia, including ingredients, can be located by searching the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods either by product name or ARTG number.

Influenza vaccines available for the 2021 influenza season within Australia do not contain any thiomersal/mercury.

Formaldehyde is used in the early stages of manufacture of some influenza vaccines as an inactivation agent. The formaldehyde is removed in the latter stages of manufacture and the product is tested to ensure formaldehyde levels are below detectable limits before the final product can be released.

All influenza vaccines available this year are latex free. However, the possibility that the product may have come into contact with instruments which contain latex cannot be excluded. Patients who are extremely sensitive to latex should consult their doctor for advice.

Fluad Quad is the only product that contains an adjuvant to boost effectiveness of the vaccine in people aged over 65 years.

Children Aged 3 Through 17 Years

Flu shot ingredients: What they contain and why

In a clinical trial in subjects aged 3 through 17 years, FLULAVAL QUADRIVALENT exhibited immunogenicity noninferior to two comparator trivalent inactivated influenza vaccine formulations, each containing an influenza type B virus that corresponded to one of the two B viruses in FLULAVAL QUADRIVALENT, a type B virus of the Victoria lineage or a type B virus of the Yamagata lineage .

  • Noninferiority was based on adjusted GMTs and seroconversion rates1
  • Seroconversion was defined as a 4-fold increase over baseline in post-vaccination hemagglutination inhibition antibody titers from pre-vaccination titer 1:10, or an increase in titer from < 1:10 to 1:401

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Residual Traces Of Components Used In Making The Vaccine

Residuals are tiny quantities of substances that have been used during vaccine manufacture. They may not remain in the final vaccine at all or are only present as traces and often measured as parts per million or billion in the final vaccine. Residuals depend on the manufacturing process of each individual vaccine, for example how the bacteria or virus was grown or what methods were used to weaken or inactivate the pathogen. The virus used in the inactivated flu vaccine is grown in fertilised chicken eggs, therefore the vaccine may contain traces of egg protein. Although the content is very low, this vaccine is not recommended for those with an egg allergy.1 Formaldehyde is used in the production of some vaccines, such as the Hepatitis B vaccine, to inactivate or kill the toxins from the bacteria or virus. Formaldehyde is naturally found in many foods and in your body, where it is produced as part of your metabolic process. The trace amount of formaldehyde in a vaccine is fifty times smaller than that found in an apple.7

Annual Selection Of Viruses

The composition of influenza vaccines are updated annually by WHO based on information gathered from the Global Influenza Surveillance and Response System , a partnership of 141 national influenza centres in 111 countries, 6 WHO collaborating centres and 4 WHO essential regulatory laboratories.

The WHO GISRS collects and analyses influenza virus samples from around the world on an ongoing basis. Each year, 1 or more components of the vaccine designated for the coming influenza season in the northern and/or southern hemisphere might be changed to reflect the most frequent and recent circulating influenza A and B viruses.

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What Is In The Flu Shot

Every year, scientists around the world do their best to get one step ahead of the flu by developing that years iteration of the flu shot. As a reminder, vaccines work by giving your body a chance to fight off an altered version of a virus or bacteria, so that if and when it encounters the live virus in the wild, it already knows how to react, and you never get sick. But whats in a flu shot is a little more complicated.

The recipe starts with the four most common influenza strains from around the world, injected into fertilized chicken eggs or mammalian cells, deactivated so it doesnt give you the actual flu, mixed with a grab-bag of preservatives, antibiotics, and sugars. This combination is then formulated for a shot or spray to make it in time for the 2021 flu season. For those science-is-fucking-awesome types out there, this is indeed awesome.

Its also complex as hell something that keeps virologists on their toes every year. Influenza strains constantly mutate, but scientists get one shot at the annual vaccine, making their best guess some 30 weeks in advance to get the flu shot out to the public.

Where To Get The Flu Vaccine

VERIFY: Yes, the COVID-19 vaccine is actually a vaccine

You can have the NHS flu vaccine at:

  • your GP surgery
  • a pharmacy offering the service
  • your midwifery service if you’re pregnant
  • a hospital appointment

If you do not have your flu vaccine at your GP surgery, you do not have to tell the surgery. This will be done for you.

It’s important to go to your vaccination appointments unless you have symptoms of COVID-19.

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