Tom Hanks, Rita Wilson Offer Their Blood to Use for Coronavirus Vaccine Research

FILE - In this Thursday, Oct. 13, 2016, file photo, Actor Tom Hanks, left, flanked by his wife Rita Wilson, arrives to receive a lifetime achievement at the Rome Film Festival, in Rome. Ever since her husband, Hanks, appeared on “Saturday Night Live” as the strange man in the pumpkin …
AP Photo/Andrew Medichini, File

Hollywood couple Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson are donating their own blood to be used to help develop a vaccine for the coronavirus, following their own experience with COVID-19.

Tom Hanks revealed in a recent interview with National Public Radio’s podcast Wait, Wait… Don’t Tell Me! that he and his wife are carrying the antibodies for coronavirus. The couple came down with the illness last month in Australia, where Hanks was supposed to film a biopic of Elvis Presley, but they have since recovered.

Hanks told NPR that he and his wife have been approached about using their blood.

“We have not only been approached; we have said, do you want our blood? Can we give plasma?” Hanks said. “And, in fact, we will be giving it now to the places that hope to work on what I would like to call the Hank-ccine.”

Pharmaceutical companies are working on potential vaccines for the novel coronavirus that would use antibodies. Some vaccines have already started human trials.

Hanks, a two-time Oscar winner for Philadelphia and Forrest Gump, also revealed during his NPR interview a little more about his experience with COVID-19.

“We had all of the flu-like symptoms. My wife, Rita, was a little worse off than me. She had a very high temperature. And we were isolated so that we would not give it to anyone else,” he said.

The actor added that he and his wife are now feeling “dandy.”

Since recovering, Hanks and Wilson have kept busy, recently joining former first lady Michelle Obama to promote vote by mail for the coming November elections. The Hollywood couple appeared last week in an online event for When We All Vote, a voter registration effort headed by Michelle Obama that has been aggressively pushing vote by mail around the country.

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