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Bryan Cranston donates his plasma and reveals he had COVID-19

Plasma therapy shows promise as COVID-19 treatment
Plasma therapy shows promise as COVID-19 trea... 02:06

Actor Bryan Cranston shared a video of himself donating plasma on Thursday and revealed he had COVID-19. In a video on Instagram, Cranston said he was "very lucky" to have very mild symptoms. He also urged people to "keep wearing the damn mask."

"Hopefully the plasma donation can help some other people," said the "Breaking Bad" actor, who had antibodies after recovering from COVID-19. 

Antibodies can be found in the blood of patients who have contracted and then recovered from the virus. The antibodies are present in plasma, the liquid part of the blood. Convalescent plasma therapy is an experimental treatment in which doctors collect plasma from donors who have recovered from COVID-19 and give it to patients who are fighting infection. 

While donating blood at UCLA Blood and Platelet Center, Cranston filmed himself joking with staff members. Wearing a mask and squeezing a stress ball, Cranston donated 840 ml of blood, which he called "liquid gold." He said the whole process took about an hour – and he spent it watching old movies. 

In the caption of the video, Cranston acknowledged that many people may be tired of dealing with the pandemic – but he encouraged them to have more patience. "I was pretty strict in adhering to the protocols and still... I contracted the virus," he wrote. "Yep. it sounds daunting now that over 150,000 Americans are dead because of it. I was one of the lucky ones."

"I count my blessings and urge you to keep wearing the damn mask, keep washing your hands, and stay socially distant. We can prevail - but ONLY if we follow the rules together. Be well - Stay well," the caption read. 

Several other public figures have contracted COVID-19. Tom Hanks and his wife, Rita Wilson, were among the first celebrities to publicly announced they had the disease. In an interview for the NPR show "Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!" in April, Hanks revealed he and Wilson carried antibodies and donated their plasma.

Bravo star Andy Cohen also battled coronavirus, keeping fans posted on his recovery. Cohen has continued to share his journey on social media, recently revealing that a doctor told him he had "robust" antibodies – yet he can't give them to people who need them, because he is gay. The FDA has restrictions for gay men who want to donate blood plasma, which Cohen said is "discriminatory."

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