5 things to know for May 19: Vaccine, hydroxychloroquine, symptoms, EU, al Qaeda

Study subjects who received Moderna's Covid-19 vaccine had positive early results, according to the biotech company, which partnered with the National Institutes of Health to develop the vaccine. Dr. Carlos del Rio, who is working on the vaccine trial, explains what steps are still to come.

Posted: May 19, 2020 8:21 PM
Updated: May 19, 2020 8:21 PM

Hurricanes, typhoons and cyclones are becoming stronger, according to a NOAA study. Great, a new thing to worry about.

Here's what you need to know to Get Up to Speed and On with Your Day.

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1. Vaccine

There's some good news in the quest for a coronavirus vaccine: The biotech company Moderna says volunteers who got its Covid-19 vaccine had positive early results. Trial participants developed neutralizing antibodies to the virus that sometimes surpassed levels seen in people who've naturally recovered from Covid-19. Neutralizing antibodies bind to the virus, disabling it from attacking human cells. But it's still not clear whether natural infection confers immunity to reinfection, and so it's also not clear whether vaccination confers immunity. The trial was very small, and the results haven't been peer-reviewed, but Moderna's chief medical officer says if future studies go well, the vaccine could be available to the public as early as January.

2. Hydroxychloroquine

President Trump claimed he's taking daily doses of hydroxychloroquine, the controversial antimalarial drug he and his inner circle have touted as a possible treatment for Covid-19. While speaking at a meeting of restaurant executives, Trump said he started taking the drug after consulting with White House physician Dr. Sean Conley -- though notably, he did not say Conley recommended the drug. Conley said in a White House memo that he and the President decided "the potential benefit from treatment outweighed the relative risk." That's not a view shared by other medical experts. The FDA has warned against the use of hydroxychloroquine to treat the coronavirus,  saying it should only be used in hospitals or clinical trials because it can kill or cause serious side effects. News of the President's regimen has drawn scrutiny and concern, including from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

3. Coronavirus symptoms

Health agencies are recording more symptoms and risks brought on by Covid-19. A new review of studies reveals delirium, confusion and agitation may be common in severe coronavirus infections while patients are hospitalized, though it's unclear if these psychological symptoms extend further into recovery. In the UK, the loss of taste or smell has been added to the official list of coronavirus symptoms. The condition is called anosmia, and its connection to the virus has been known among medical communities for months. Finally, another study has shown enlargement of one of the heart's four chambers -- the right ventricle -- was the best predictor of which patients with severe Covid-19 infections were most likely to die. It sounds dire, but knowing this can help doctors better determine which new patients are most at risk.

4. European Union

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron have unveiled a $500 billion initiative to rescue the European Union from economic crisis. The pandemic fallout has plunged the EU into its worst economic shock since the Great Depression, and it's also opened old political wounds among the 27 member countries. Those divisions have slowed progress on a recovery fund to rebuild regional economies. Under Merkel and Macron's plan, the European Commission would borrow money to boost the EU economy and channel the funds through the EU budget to the hardest-hit regions. Germany and France are the EU's leading economies, and the two leaders are hoping their proposal will unite their fellow EU nations, which would have to all agree on the proposal before it could happen.

5. Al Qaeda

Did al Qaeda strike on American soil last year? That's the question raised by new information from the FBI about a shooting at the Pensacola Navy base that left three US sailors dead in December. FBI Director Christopher Wray said attacker Mohammed Alshamrani, a member of the Royal Saudi Air Force, was a longtime associate of an al Qaeda affiliate who had communicated with operatives from the group as recently as the night before the shooting. US investigators uncovered the connection after the FBI broke through the encryption protecting the Saudi attacker's iPhones. But Wray stopped short of saying Alshamrani, who was killed by law enforcement during the attack, had been directed by the terror group. Since 9/11, no foreign terrorist organization has successfully directed a deadly attack in the US.

BREAKFAST BROWSE

A priest used a squirt gun to fire holy water at congregants. Now, he's a meme

Strange times call for strange measures.

A man wore a watermelon on his head while robbing a convenience store. He was arrested

For the record, watermelons are not very good safety masks, either.

Ryan Seacrest is reassuring fans after an apparent 'American Idol' health scare 

His rep said he, like so many others, was just feeling the work-from-home stress.

A South Korean football club is apologizing for filling the fan-less stands with, uh, 'love dolls'

They were probably a tough crowd.

A Maryland restaurant is using inner tubes to encourage social distancing

Like we said, strange times.

HAPPENING LATER

Follow the (stimulus) money 

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will give their first report on the economic stimulus programs implemented by the $2.2 trillion CARES Act when they testify today before the Senate Banking Committee. The CARES Act was passed two months ago and was meant to help support the economy and businesses struggling under stay-at-home measures.

TODAY'S NUMBER

900%

That's how much demand has risen for American Diagnostic Corp's "non-contact" thermometers, according to the company's CEO Marc Blitstein. Demand for thermometers is through the roof, partly because large companies are ordering thermometers to shore up their Covid-19 measures, and experts worry the US is rapidly running low on supply.

TODAY'S QUOTE

"I'd rather have him on the phone with some world leader than have him wash dishes because maybe his wife isn't there or his kids aren't there."

President Trump, defending Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Steve Linick, the State Department inspector general whom Trump fired last week, was investigating whether Pompeo made a staffer perform a variety of personal errands, including walking his dog, picking up dry cleaning and making dinner reservations.

TODAY'S WEATHER

Check your local forecast here>>>

AND FINALLY

Bird therapy 

Listen to this bird speak cute, reassuring little nothings into your ear. There, now don't you feel better? (Click here to view.)

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 48201

Reported Deaths: 2693
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion11624683
Lake5146242
Elkhart328546
Allen2762129
St. Joseph194366
Cass16389
Hamilton1552101
Hendricks1403100
Johnson1278118
Porter72837
Tippecanoe7158
Madison65864
Clark65144
Bartholomew58544
Howard57557
LaPorte57326
Kosciusko5464
Vanderburgh5226
Marshall4924
Noble47828
Jackson4703
LaGrange4708
Hancock44835
Boone44243
Delaware44250
Shelby42525
Floyd37944
Morgan32931
Grant29426
Monroe29428
Montgomery29420
Clinton2892
Dubois2736
Henry26315
White26310
Decatur25032
Lawrence24425
Dearborn23623
Vigo2348
Warrick21429
Harrison21322
Unassigned193193
Greene18832
Miami1822
Jennings17611
Putnam1698
DeKalb1624
Scott1607
Daviess14317
Wayne1386
Orange13623
Steuben1292
Perry1279
Franklin1248
Jasper1212
Ripley1167
Wabash1122
Carroll1102
Fayette997
Newton9810
Starke933
Whitley925
Huntington812
Gibson802
Randolph794
Jefferson722
Wells721
Fulton701
Jay680
Washington671
Knox640
Pulaski641
Clay604
Rush583
Adams501
Benton480
Owen471
Sullivan441
Brown391
Posey390
Spencer381
Blackford372
Crawford320
Tipton321
Fountain312
Switzerland270
Parke230
Martin220
Ohio170
Vermillion140
Warren141
Union130
Pike110

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 57150

Reported Deaths: 2911
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Franklin10271422
Cuyahoga7724373
Hamilton5924197
Marion273238
Lucas2723302
Pickaway219141
Summit2131206
Montgomery198126
Mahoning1825232
Butler157644
Columbiana130360
Stark1107112
Lorain102167
Trumbull93965
Warren83921
Clark7659
Delaware56815
Fairfield55916
Tuscarawas55210
Belmont54622
Medina51632
Lake49718
Licking47712
Miami46331
Portage44058
Ashtabula43344
Wood42151
Geauga40542
Clermont4006
Wayne36251
Richland3375
Allen31540
Mercer2818
Greene2519
Darke24825
Erie24222
Holmes2313
Huron2152
Madison1958
Ottawa14323
Crawford1355
Sandusky13414
Washington13220
Putnam12815
Ross1243
Hardin12312
Morrow1161
Auglaize1064
Coshocton972
Monroe8917
Jefferson872
Union851
Muskingum831
Hancock781
Hocking788
Preble731
Guernsey703
Lawrence700
Williams702
Clinton680
Shelby684
Logan621
Fulton610
Ashland591
Carroll593
Wyandot586
Athens561
Brown561
Knox511
Defiance503
Fayette460
Highland451
Champaign401
Scioto380
Perry341
Van Wert340
Seneca332
Henry290
Jackson230
Paulding230
Pike230
Adams221
Vinton222
Gallia171
Harrison121
Meigs120
Morgan110
Noble110
Unassigned00
Fort Wayne
Few Clouds
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Hi: 93° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 93°
Angola
Clear
88° wxIcon
Hi: 92° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 88°
Huntington
Scattered Clouds
90° wxIcon
Hi: 92° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 91°
Decatur
Scattered Clouds
91° wxIcon
Hi: 92° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 91°
Van Wert
Scattered Clouds
91° wxIcon
Hi: 94° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 91°
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