The shot uses a harmless cold virus to deliver the spike protein of the coronavirus into the body, which scientists hope will prompt an immune response.
Faust said the news from Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech last week that their vaccine appears to be 90% effective according to preliminary data was a welcome boost for their research.
“It’s fantastic news that vaccines aimed at the spike protein can prevent coronavirus disease,” Faust, a professor of pediatric immunology and infectious diseases at the University of Southampton, said at a news briefing.
“We just don’t know how each of these vaccines is going to behave and which are going to generate the better short and long-term immunity,” he added.
Faust said half of the people in the new U.K. study will be given a placebo vaccine of saline. He added that researchers are hoping to recruit people from groups disproportionately affected by COVID-19, including older people and those of ethnic minorities.
The Jannsen vaccine is among the six experimental coronavirus vaccines that Britain has ordered as part of a planned 350 million-dose stockpile.
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