Chinese scientists developing a vaccine for the deadly SARS virus said the vaccine had reached a sufficient stage of development to be ready for emergency deployment to protect high-risk individuals if there was another outbreak this spring, the China Daily reported. Yin Weiping, managing director of vaccine-maker Sinovac Biotech Co Ltd, said the vaccine had already passed its first human trials with no obvious side-effects seen in volunteers. He said that while second- and third-stage trials would be needed before the vaccine could be ready for commercial use, individuals such as doctors and nurses could be protected with the vaccine immediately if the virus returns again this year. "Compared to the time when there was no SARS vaccine, we now feel much less disquiet with spring approaching, because we now have a powerful weapon," the China Daily quoted one Beijing-based doctor as saying.
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