The latest in a number of major mutual funds reopening to new investors, Vanguard announced August 7 that it has made its Vanguard Explorer Fund and Vanguard Health Care Fund available to new shareholder accounts, effective immediately.

Vanguard closed the Explorer Fund and limited additional purchases in February 2006. Now, the small-cap growth fund has $10.1 billion in assets, and the $25,000 annual investment limit for the Explorer Fund has been removed. The investor shares of Explorer Fund require a minimum initial investment of $3,000 to open a new account.

The $23.1 billion Vanguard Health Care Fund, which focuses on pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and other healthcare-related stocks, was closed in March 2005. Presently, the minimum initial investment for a new account of any type in the investor shares of Health Care Fund is $25,000.

“We believe that the funds can accommodate additional assets at this time, given their current size and cash flow levels,” said Vanguard chairman and CEO Jack Brennan, in a statement announcing the reopening of the funds. Brennan cautioned investors not to interpret the reopenings as a recommendation to buy small-cap or healthcare securities.

Brennan, 54, will be succeeded as CEO on August 31 by F. William McNabb, the current president of Vanguard; Brennan will remain chairman of the firm.

Meanwhile, four other Vanguard funds–Vanguard PRIMECAP Fund, Vanguard Capital Opportunity Fund, Vanguard Precious Metals and Mining Fund, and Vanguard International Explorer Fund–remain closed.