Researchers at the Israeli Institute for Biological Research (IIBR) in Ness Ziona reported that initial tests of their coronavirus vaccine have been successful when tested on hamsters. They added that if human trials were to begin in the coming weeks, a vaccine could be ready for mass distribution by the end of the coming winter, N12 reported on Saturday.The IIBR released a 26-page document on Saturday detailing the results of the coronavirus vaccine experiments its researchers carried out. The Israeli vaccine is based on a well-known method of vaccination, but what’s new is the use of a VSV virus – a virus that does not cause diseases in humans.The VSV virus has certain proteins were which were genetically engineered onto it which form the coronavirus “crown,” and when the human body identifies it as COVID-19, it produces antibodies to it.According to the report, the results of the experiments performed on hamsters decidedly showed that all hamsters which received the IIBR’s vaccine did not not get sick.This is an important step on the path to vaccination. According to the institute, if the Health Ministry approves the IIBR to begin human trials in the coming weeks, the timeframe to a vaccination can be greatly reduced. The IIBR has been playing a key role in the fight against the deadly virus since early February after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu asked that the institute to step up its efforts.In April, the IIBR announced it had begun testing a COVID-19 vaccine prototype on rodents. In early May, the IIBR achieved a major breakthrough in its search for a COVID-19 vaccine when it first identified an antibody that neutralizes the coronavirus.