Vaccine development is an exceptionally lengthy, complicated process, frequently lasting up to 15 years and involve a combination of private and public involvement. The current regulatory system for producing, testing, and approving vaccines developed over the last half century as the medical groups involved standardized their internal processes and procedures. Although there are a few exceptions to this rule, most medical research and production now occur in a similar environment. This has resulted in increased uniformity in practices and a greater degree of stability in pricing and marketing. However, as new diseases and circumstances continue to emerge, this consistent system can be greatly affected by the ever-changing needs of the pharmaceutical industry.

Manufacturing And Production

Vaccine manufacturing is done mostly in the clinical laboratories located on plant grounds. Although the majority of work in the labs does not require sterile conditions, they must be sterile because all of the ingredients in vaccines are considered contaminated if they are not produced in facilities that are virus free. It is not unusual for staff to be exposed to biological hazards during production, and those who work in the production area need to be on routine safety maintenance visits. All of the work that is done in the laboratories is dedicated to research and development of new vaccines and other medications. Safety precautions are constantly being evaluated to make sure staff is not unnecessarily exposed to harmful viruses or substances.

The goal of the vaccine manufacturer is to produce a high quality product that can effectively protect individuals from diseases that they may be susceptible to. By creating top-quality vaccines, the pharmaceutical company is providing the population with a safe and effective way to fight disease. The type of virus or disease that is being targeted is typically a major focus of research and development. Because some strains of a disease are more difficult to develop vaccines against, the cost of producing a vaccine will depend on the severity of the disease, its possibility of spreading to other people, and the number of people who will be exposed to the vaccine.

Stages Of The Production Process

There are many stages of vaccine production. The first step is what is known as “pre-vaxation”. This is the process of working with the appropriate local regulatory agencies to secure the use of the vaccine. Next, the vaccine is tested in volunteers. Testing of samples is usually done only one to two weeks before actual production. Finally, the vaccine is produced in small batches for distribution to the community.

Vaccine development requires rigorous research and intense testing. For example, a vaccine may be developed using a cell-based technology. If it is successful, then the next step will be to look at genetically engineered mosquitoes that will transmit the vaccine to humans. Much research goes into developing vaccines; however, it takes many years before these important medicines are available. In fact, it may take up to 20 years for a new vaccine to become available.


Vaccine manufacturing is a critical part of medical research. Without it, many diseases would never be preventable. However, because of the huge costs of producing vaccines, the vaccine development process is often seen as a money-making venture by pharmaceutical companies. Many companies have large facilities and staff devoted to vaccine manufacturing. These facilities often employ hundreds and even thousands of people.