SASKATOON -- It’s been a couple months since researchers a Saskatoon-based lab started working on a COVID-19 vaccine, now they’re moving on to the next phase: animal trials. 

"We have a group of animals that’s been vaccinated and have recently been challenged (infected). So we can compare that group, the vaccinated group, to the non-vaccinated group to see how effective our vaccine is,” said Scott Napper, acting associate director of research at VIDO-InterVac. 

By the end of the month, researchers will have a better idea of how effective the vaccine is, according to Napper. 

He said they are hoping that by fall they will move on to human trials, and be one step closer to a working vaccine.

The lab, which is located at the University of Saskatchewan, received  $23 million from the Canadian government  in March to help with its research.

“You’ve got one of the leading institutes for the study of infectious diseases right here in Saskatchewan, and I’m a Prairie boy,” Napper said.

“The idea that we’re tackling the biggest problems facing the world and we’re doing it with such success, to me, this is a very proud moment.”