In our studies on the induction of an immune response by oral immunization, we have explored the potential of a novel approach for antigen delivery by microencapsulation. This procedure preserved the immunogenicity of the influenza virus introduced by either systemic or oral routes. Furthermore, the levels of specific antibodies in serum and in saliva were enhanced and lasted longer (up to 4 months) in animals immunized with of antigens in microencapsulated form than in animals immunized with equal doses of free suspension. Preliminary challenge experiments showed a correlation between levels of antibodies and protection. All mice systemically immunized were protected against the virus, while mice orally immunized with lower doses of microencapsulated antigen had better survival rates than those immunized with higher doses. Additional experiments suggested that low doses of immunogen were able to generate better protective immunity than high doses, which may instead be tolerogenic. Further experiments with a well characterized microencapsulated antigen (size of microcapsules, time of release of antigen, as well as its dose and form) will be necessary to establish conditions for optimal immunization protocols applicable for the oral or systemic routes.