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One of Britain’s top scientists is “80 percent” confident that a vaccine for COVID-19, which has killed over 108,000 people globally, could be ready by September.
Oxford University vaccinology professor Sarah Gilbert told the Times of London Saturday that “if everything goes perfectly” her team’s vaccine could be ready by the fall, The Washington Post reported.
“I know quite a lot about the Oxford project, and it is really great to see some hope, especially on the front page of the newspapers,” Matt Hancock, the U.K.’s health secretary, told the Post.
There are dozens of teams in various countries globally trying to come up with a working vaccine for the pandemic that has plagued the world the past several months.
Anthony Fauci, member of the White House coronavirus task force and director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, and other top U.S. health experts have previously stated that it could take researchers 18 months to create a working vaccine.
Gilbert told the London newspaper that human trials of the vaccine are starting in the next two weeks.
“I think there’s a high chance that it will work, based on other things that we have done with this type of vaccine,” Gilbert said. “It’s not just a hunch, and as every week goes by, we have more data to look at.”
The newspaper noted however, that even if an effective vaccine is created by September, it will be difficult to produce it en masse.