A flu virus
An influenza virus. 2ndpic/Getty Images

How do flu vaccines work?

The flu shot changes every year. But why is the flu special, if other illnesses have much longer-lasting vaccines? This episode takes us into the world of viruses and immunity.

A friendly lymphocyte fills us in on how flu shots work, and science journalist Anna Rothschild shares how vaccines started around the world. We'll hear from some virus-busting detectives to see how scientists solve the case of how to make next year’s flu shot as effective as possible. Author Maryn McKenna will stop by and drop some flu knowledge, too!

Get your ears ready for a good, thumping mystery sound, and a new Moment of Um: how do straws work?

Learn more: Watch Anna Rothschild’s video series on vaccines.