The vaccine, designed by an international team of scientists, has the potential to give protection for up to 88 per cent of known flu strains worldwide in a single shot, spelling the end of the winter flu season, the researchers said.
"The components of this universal flu vaccine would be short flu virus fragments - called epitopes - that are already known to be recognised by the immune system. Our collaboration has found a way to select epitopes reaching full population coverage," said Pedro Reche of Complutense University, Madrid, Spain
Every year researchers choose a strain of flu as the vaccine, hoping that it will protect against the next year's strains.
Previous pandemics include the "Spanish flu" of 1918, and the two subsequent pandemics of 1957 and 1968, which led to millions of deaths, Medical Xpress reported.
Currently, annual flu epidemics are estimated to cause up to half a million deaths globally, recent reports from the World Health Organization revealed.
In addition, scientists have also devised a US-specific vaccine with coverage of 95 per cent of known influenza strains in the country.
The researchers have applied ground-breaking computational techniques to design the vaccine.
"Based on our knowledge of the flu virus and the human immune system, we can use computers to design the components of a vaccine that gives much broader and longer-lasting protection," researchers said in the study.