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Using Cows to Develop Antibody Treatment; Warm Weather and Stay-At-Home Compliance; Coronavirus Cases Decline in 28 States; MLB Commissioner Confidence about Deal. Aired 6:30-7a ET

Aired May 15, 2020 - 06:30   ET



ELIZABETH COHEN, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: That cow. Because of the genetic engineering, the cow produces human antibodies to the virus. Those antibodies are collected from the cow. And, once purified, become a drug that might work to combat the coronavirus in humans.

So these cows are plasma donors, just like humans who have recovered from coronavirus and donate blood, but the cows have a big advantage, and that is, they're big and have a lot of blood to give.

DR. EDDIE J. SULLIVAN, SAB BIOTHERAPEUTICS: So it's one of the reasons that we chose cattle because, obviously, they are a large animal.

COHEN: Plus, they can donate plasma three times a month. Humans can only donate once a month.

Another company, Regeneron, is trying a similar approach with mice who are engineered to have portions of a human immune system. The scientists call them magic mice. They extract and clone the best antibodies.

DR. GEORGE YANCOPOULOS, REGENERON: We literally genetically humanized mice. We put in the genes for the human immune system into mice so that these mice have pretty much exactly a human immune system.

COHEN: Both companies plan to start human clinical trials early this summer.

COHEN (on camera): If all goes well, when might this drug be on the market?

SULLIVAN: So, if all goes well, we expect that we will have the drug on the market by early next year.

COHEN (voice over): Of course, there's no telling if this will work, but hopefully these part human animals will play a role in saving lives during the pandemic.

Elizabeth Cohen, CNN, reporting.

(END VIDEOTAPE) CAMEROTA: So we are going to have a taste of summer in the northeast this weekend, which, of course, could be a challenge for people who are trying to stay at home.

CNN meteorologist Allison Chinchar has our forecast.

It's going to be hot re.

ALLISON CHINCHAR, AMS METEOROLOGIST: It is. And that actually could lead to some strong to severe thunderstorms.

So, yes, we take a look at the temperatures and, again, places like New York and Washington, D.C., about five to ten degrees above average. But that warm air extends all the way back towards Dallas and even Houston, Texas. And it's that warm air that's going to help to fuel some strong to severe thunderstorms. You can see, we have the potential, especially in the northeast, for cities like Boston, New York, Syracuse, even Albany and Hartford. But we also have the potential for some severe weather for cities like Oklahoma City, Dallas, even stretching down towards San Antonio.

Now, the Northeast, the best timeline of these storms is going to be late morning, especially for a lot of Midwestern areas, then gradually pushing into the northeast once we get to the afternoon and especially into the evening hours. Albany, Williamsport, basically that 6:00 to 10:00 p.m. timeframe. And it will linger through the overnight hours and into early Saturday, especially for the coastal cities. So do keep that in mind.

Another coastal system we are keeping an eye on is this one, just off the coast of the Bahamas and Florida. This could potentially become Tropical Storm Arthur in just the next 48 hours.

Regardless of whether it does or not, it is expected to bring some pretty heavy rainfall across areas of Florida, at least in the short term. Then the system will ride up the East Coast. That same system bringing severe storms up further west. That's going to help push what could be Arthur well out into sea, preventing it from really coming inland, which is good news. Nobody really wants to have a tropical system a little bit early because, Alisyn, keep in mind, the start of hurricane season doesn't technically start until June 1st.

CAMEROTA: All right, Allison, thank you very much for the forecast.

And as Allison just told us, weather across the U.S. is getting warmer. Will that help get rid of coronavirus? Is coronavirus seasonal? We have the latest info on that, next.



CAMEROTA: This morning, the coronavirus death toll in the United States is nearing 86,000 people. But, at the same time, there are signs of progress. The number of new cases in 28 states is decreasing, including Georgia, which was among one of the first states to reopen three weeks ago.

Joining us now is Maureen Miller. She's an infectious disease epidemiologist at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health.

Ms. Miller, great to have you.

I think that Georgia is such an interesting case study. So let's just dive in to what, if anything, we can learn from Georgia.

It reopened on April 24th. And you'll remember, that was when the models and the experts said that they were making a mistake, they should not be reopening. In fact, I think the University of Washington model didn't think they should open until June. But they opened. And, since then, the cases in Georgia have gone down 12 percent. I -- I know we're on a lag time, but it has been three weeks. So what do you see and what can we glean from Georgia?


I think what is not being considered is the major behavioral changes that Americans made as the pandemic unfolded in this country. Regardless of whether state government decided to put in rigorous social distancing, people stayed at home. And that absolutely had an impact on the community spread of the virus. So we did bring the caseload down.

I suspect that the cases are simmering right now. The lag time, we would expect to start seeing people in hospital and dying probably in the next two to three weeks.

CAMEROTA: So is that what you think is going to happen? You think that in Georgia we have sort of a false sense of security at the moment and we are going to see a spike?

MILLER: Well, I -- you know, I can't say for sure because we are flying blind a little bit. There is not the amount of testing that would be required to ensure that we know what's going on. So testing, yes, has increased. But has testing been as targeted as it needs to be? Are we testing the essential workers who have been working throughout? Are we testing low-income communities of color where we know the virus has had a huge impact? Are those tests free? Do people have health insurance to get those tests?

So I think the testing issue just keeps coming up again and again and again and we need to have more availability, a coordinated approach, and it needs to be free.


CAMEROTA: Is it also possible that the weather in Georgia has something to do with its success? That the hot, humid conditions in Georgia do help dissipate the virus and would that suggest that the virus is seasonal? MILLER: There could be some seasonality with this virus. There's lab

data that suggests that the coronavirus does not like heat and humidity. But, if we looked around the globe, if we look in places like Brazil, Tanzania, Southeast Asia, it's spreading like wildfire. And those places are hot and steamy right now.

I think our actions and human behavior have really brought the caseload down. I think it could have been much, much worse. And there's also a natural wave. So we're -- we're still in the wave in the United States, in wave number one. And, you know, even on your show we're watching it march further and further west to less populated states. And even less populated states are seeing a caseload. So that is how the wave works. It's going to bubble up in different places over time. And --

CAMEROTA: But I guess I'm just still confused. If it is -- if it is going up in these hot, humid places, as you point out, we've seen spikes in places like Australia, Brazil, Singapore, then maybe it's not seasonal, I mean despite what the lab data you're saying suggests. Is it or is it not killed by heat?

MILLER: So -- well, that we -- we're not certain of. And it doesn't look good. It doesn't have to adapt.

One of the factors that could contribute to seasonality is being outside. People spend a lot more time outside in the summer, in the nice weather. And if you think of, you know, taking a drop of color and dropping it into a bowl of water, it spreads much more quickly. If you take that same color and drop it into the ocean, it just dissipates further. So spending time outside will definitely help in the spread, in controlling the spread.

CAMEROTA: You know, speaking of controlling the spread, I just have to show this video that was produced in Japan. It has gone viral, pun intended, because it simulates what happens when one infected person goes into a restaurant in close quarters, sort of the type you would see at a buffet or on a cruise ship. One person has the infection, as you can see from this fluorescent substance put on this one person's hands, and you just watch how that one person then spreads it to serving, you know, serving utensils, and surfaces, and door handles, and the table, and his face, and then the people that he's with, and it is just stunning. I mean this is what -- they say it simulates how coronavirus spreads, how quickly. It's a real cautionary tale about going back to restaurants.

So when you see that video, I'm just not sure how restaurants -- I'm not sure, first, how consumers will feel comfortable going into restaurants and how restaurants can stop that spread.

MILLER: I think what we're seeing right now is lower risk people are the ones who are going to take advantage of the opening of the economy. And the jury's still out. Are lots of people going to go? Well, some places, yes, some places, no.

Higher-risk people are probably going to be a little bit more conservative. But they will be pressured by their friends to go out. They'll also be pressured by isolation. It's no fun staying inside all of the time.

So I -- indoor spaces I think pose a huge, huge challenge. They're -- we -- we're looking at the idea, is coronavirus airborne? Epidemiologists have been asking that for the last couple of months. And now the science actually looks at the mechanism of transmission. It's starting to spread the idea that it, indeed, is airborne.


Well, Maureen Miller, thank you very much for your expertise. Thank you for walking us through what we may be encountering over the next weeks as the country reopens.

Great to talk to you.

So many parents and kids are wondering, will camps reopen this summer? Or I should just say open. That's next.



JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: This morning, with so many parents wondering about school next fall, they have a more immediate concern. What about this summer, day camp, overnight camp, scout camp, nature camp? Right now, many camps just in limbo trying to decide how they should reopen or whether to reopen at all.

CNN's Laura Jarrett joins us now with the very latest.

Laura, this is something we're dealing with in my house.

LAURA JARRETT, CNN ANCHOR, "EARLY START": John, everyone is. You know, kids have been cooped up for weeks now. They've been staring at screens and their parents are trying to figure out what to do about this summer. But coronavirus means the answer is just not so simple.


LAUREN RUTKOWSKI, OWNER-DIRECTOR, CAMP IHC: Outdoors and socializing is the medicine that everybody needs.

We know how advantageous the camp experience is in every domain, psychologically, physically, emotionally.

JARRETT (voice over): Across the country, parents, children and camp directors all wondering if a summer rite of passage will be lost to Covid-19.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was supposed to go to sleep away camp for the first time.


JARRETT: Without any federal guidance, camps are taking direction from state and local government officials. Camp industry groups are also crafting guidelines to help, recommending camps stock up on supplies and ideally test every camper for Covid ahead of time.

RUTKOWSKI: We are not public health experts. We are experts in running Camp IHC.

JARRETT: But whether to open camp fluctuates from state to state.

GOV. JANET MILLS (D-ME): We're working on that. See if there's a way we can safely allow them to reopen in some capacity, some degree.

JARRETT: In states like Illinois, some camps opting not to open this season. Others, like in Connecticut, announcing day camps will open.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sometime in July we'll have outdoor camps. They're outdoors, smaller groups.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: See you guys in the morning. Have a great night.

JARRETT: But sleep away camps aren't there yet.

PAUL MCENTIRE, CHIEF OPERATIONS OFFICER, YMCA And if you've got children being transported from a high-impact area with children that aren't, there's risk there.

JARRETT: From California to Maine, plans are in flux, leaving many families in limbo, and working parents like Kelly Foster, a mom of two, bracing for disappointment.

KELLY FOSTER, PARENT: I've always counted on summer camps to help watch them so that I can work during the summer. And I know that they're getting some fun, different experiences, and I'm able to work. So, not sure what we're going to do.

JARRETT: And families aren't the only ones worried. With an estimated 20 million kids going to camp each year, if camps don't open this summer, they could see a devastating loss in earnings.

MCENTIRE: So our overnight camps do over $300 million of revenue. Our day camps do over $400 million, almost $500 million of revenue.

JARRETT: The challenge now for camp directors, how to open safely and keep camp, well, like camp. And even if camps get the green light to open this summer, bunks, dining halls and activities will all look different, and no visitors allowed.

RUTKOWSKI: Typically our campers would receive letters in the mail. We've already, you know, talked about that we won't be receiving letters this year.

JARRETT: Some directors like Lauren Rutkowski say they're not even sure they should open.

RUTKOWSKI: I want to be able to look my parents in the eye and say, no matter what the decision is that I make, whether it's to open or not to open, I want to be able to look them in the eye and say, I left no stone unturned to ensure the safety of your child.


JARRETT: John, on Thursday, the CDC released a one-page decision tree for camps to consider before they open, but it doesn't answer any of the key questions, like, how many feet apart should bunks be to keep campers safe? And so, as a result, what you're going to likely see is a patchwork of decision-making across the country with parents ultimately making the decision about whether they need to take a year off from camp.

BERMAN: You know, look, camp is a luxury for some families. For others, it's like daycare --

JARRETT: It's childcare.

BERMAN: Depending on what your needs are if you have to go back to work. Yes, childcare, absolutely.

All right, Laura, thank you very much.

JARRETT: Thank you.

BERMAN: So, the return of baseball being threatened by a dispute over money. You're going to want to hear the latest, next.



CAMEROTA: Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred says he's confident that the league will reach an agreement with the players. Andy Scholes has more in the "Bleacher Report."

Are you as confident, Andy?

ANDY SCHOLES, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, I'm wavering a little bit, Alisyn. I'm a little nervous of whether or not we're going to have a baseball season. But Rob Manfred was on CNN's town hall last night and he actually said if they didn't have a season, that the owners could lose up to $4 billion. Now, according to multiple reports, the owners want the players to split this season's revenue 50/50. The Players' Association say, well, that's not happening and they already reached a deal for pro-rated salaries back in March.

A former Cy Young Award Winner, Blake Snell, saying yesterday, with the risks so high, he's not playing for a reduced salary. Manfred, though, says, with the new protocols, he hopes to convince players that it will be safe and he's optimistic that they will work this out.


ROB MANFRED, COMMISSIONER, MLB: Whenever there's a discussion about economics, publicly people tend to characterize it as a fight. Me, personally, I have great confidence that we'll reach an agreement with the Players' Association, both that it's safe to come back to work, and work out the economic issues that need to be resolved.


SCHOLES: Now, Manfred also said they will test players multiple times per week and they've secured a deal with a Utah lab to get results in 24 hours. If a player tests positive, the team will not be shut down. The players will be removed from the group and they will then do contact tracing.

All right, in the meantime, arrest warrants have been issued for two NFL players who allegedly robbed people at gunpoint at a house party in Florida. According to Miramar Police, the Giants' DeAndre Baker, who was the first round pick for the team last year, and Quinton Dunbar, who was just traded to the Seahawks, allegedly stole thousands of dollars in cash and some valuable watches. Now both face charges of armed robbery. No comment yet from the players.

Alisyn, the NFL says they are aware of the report, but they do not have a comment at this time.

CAMEROTA: OK, Andy. Thank you very much for all of that.

So, a blistering editorial by one of the world's most prestigious medical journals has a message to the American people. We'll tell what you it is.

NEW DAY continues right now.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Parts of New York State will slowly start on the road back to some sort of normal.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's confusing to people. If counties don't take any position, then whatever they want to do, they can do. Our state is open.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think what the court has done is put people's health and safety on the line.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He understood that we had a significant supply chain problem with respect to masks.