Intranasal vaccines for SARS-CoV-2: From challenges to potential in COVID-19 management

Vivek P. Chavda*, Lalitkumar K. Vora*, Anjali K. Pandya, Vandana B. Patravale

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

133 Citations (Scopus)


Unlike conventional Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) vaccines, intranasal vaccines display a superior advantage because the nasal mucosa is often the initial site of infection. Preclinical and clinical studies concerning intranasal immunization elicit high neutralizing antibody generation and mucosal IgA and T cell responses that avoid severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection in both; the upper and lower respiratory tract. A nasal formulation is non-invasive with high appeal to patients. Intranasal vaccines enable self-administration and can be designed to survive at ambient temperatures, thereby simplifying logistical aspects of transport and storage. In this review, we provide an overview of nasal vaccines with a focus on formulation development as well as ongoing preclinical and clinical studies for SARS-CoV-2 intranasal vaccine products.

Original languageEnglish
JournalDrug Discovery Today
Early online date29 Jul 2021
Publication statusEarly online date - 29 Jul 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Figs. 1 and 2 were prepared using templates from A.K.P. would like to thank the Department of Science & Technology (DST) INSPIRE program of the Ministry of Science & Technology, Government of India, for providing her fellowship. V.B.P. would like to acknowledge DBT BIRAC COVID-19 Research Consortium, Government of India, for her grant to work toward the development of an intranasal mucosal vaccine for COVID-19 infection (BT/PR40394/COV/140/1/2020).

Funding Information:
Anjali Pandya is a recipient of a doctoral fellowship at the Institute of Chemical Technology, Mumbai, India, awarded by the Department of Science and Technology (DST) - Innovation in Science Pursuit for Inspired Research (INSPIRE), Government of India, for research on oral protein and peptide delivery,.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Elsevier Ltd

Copyright 2021 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Antigen-presenting cells (APCs)
  • COVID-19
  • Dendritic cells
  • Nasal spray
  • Nasal vaccine
  • SARS-CoV-2

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery


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