Too many vaccines. Vaccines too soon. The timing of vaccines on the schedule. While these are vaccine-related concerns, they also have to do with the immune system. As such, helping people better understand how the immune system works may help to relieve or address some vaccine-related concerns. The Vaccine Education Center recently added a new website section about the immune system. You may find it to be a helpful resource for talking about the immune system or for sharing with patients and their families.

New web pages include:

  • About this Section — Provides an overview of each of the other pages.
  • Types of Immunity — Describes how passive and active immunity are achieved and describes community immunity.
  • Parts of the Immune System — Describes the organs and tissues of the immune system and the innate and adaptive immune systems and how they respond to pathogens.
  • Development of the Immune System — Describes the gestational development of the immune system as well as its status at birth and what that means for vaccines.
  • How the Immune System Works — Describes primary and memory immune responses as well as original antigenic sin and weakened immunity. This page also briefly addresses the effects of vitamins, complementary and alternative treatments, and medications on the immune system.
  • What Happens when the Immune System Does Not Work Properly? — Describes immune deficiencies, unnecessary or overzealous immune responses and autoimmunity, and provides examples of each.

The new website section can be accessed from the right navigation of the VEC website by selecting “Human Immune System.”

We hope you will find this new web section to be a useful resource.

Materials in this section are updated as new information and vaccines become available. The Vaccine Education Center staff regularly reviews materials for accuracy.

You should not consider the information in this site to be specific, professional medical advice for your personal health or for your family's personal health. You should not use it to replace any relationship with a physician or other qualified healthcare professional. For medical concerns, including decisions about vaccinations, medications and other treatments, you should always consult your physician or, in serious cases, seek immediate assistance from emergency personnel.