But independent scientists, including leading vaccine developer Dr Stanley Plotkin, have cautioned against banking on the results too soon, noting that the data are incomplete and that many questions still remain.
At this stage, no long-term safety and efficacy data has been collected, and it will take months — if not years — to understand how long immunity (generated by the vaccine) lasts.
“That there is early efficacy of 90 per cent is great, but … we don’t know whether vaccine protects against infection, so that individuals who are vaccinated won’t be able to excrete the virus and infect other people,” Dr Plotkin, emeritus professor of paediatrics at the University of Pennsylvania, told RN Breakfast.
“We don’t know whether it protects the elderly as well as the young.
There is also concern the vaccine will present significant manufacturing and logistical challenges, says Professor Nolan.