Economic and practical challenges to the formulation of vaccines against endemic infectious diseases such as malaria
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Herein, we analyze in general the current vaccine market and identify potential factors driving and modulating supply and demand for vaccines. An emphasis is placed on changes in regulation in the last 20 years which have led to increased indirect costs of production, and which can create a barrier against the timely use of technological advances to reduce direct costs. Other defining industry characteristics, such as firm numbers and sizes, cost and pricing strategies, nature extent and impact of Government involvement and international regulation are noted. These considerations, far from being removed from basic vaccine research, influence its ability to achieve aims that can be then progressed into effective vaccine products. We discuss specifically the development of particulate vaccines against malaria, a major lethal disease and health problem prevalent in Africa, including some key economic and methodological challenges and opportunities. We note some practical issues blocking the development of effective particulate vaccines for the Third World, mainly driven by the regulatory spiral noted above.