Sars-CoV-2 is the virus which causes the disease Covid-19. There are at least 20 vaccines in development around the world.

The CSIRO is testing two options selected by a global consortium overseeing most of this research, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations.

One option, developed by the University of Oxford, is a vector vaccine. It uses a “defective” virus to introduce the proteins of the coronavirus to the immune system and induce a response.

“But they’re not able to replicate… so there’s no possibility of becoming ill through this particular vaccine,” said Prof Trevor Drew, director of the Australian Animal Health Laboratory in Victoria, where the testing is being carried out.