“The reason Henrietta's cells were so precious was because they allowed scientists to perform experiments that would have been impossible with a living human. They cut HeLa cells apart and exposed them to endless toxins, radiation, and infection. They bombarded them with drugs, hoping to find one that would kill malignant cells without destroying normal ones.” (58)”Throughout the book “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks” there are many examples of how the HeLa cell of Henrietta Lacks provided cellular information and examples that helped mold many cellular discoveries and experiments.
I presume that it would be ethically correct to provide a compensation to Henrietta Lacks descendants. I am aware that Henrietta Lacks cells enabled scientist to encounter new discoveries such as the polio vaccine and other. However, the benefits of her cells does not outweigh the fact that Lacks family deserved some sort of compensation. It would be ethically correct because the financial reward could have accommodated the needs of her family. In the article “Family of Henrietta Lacks gains some control” states, “When scientists and doctors crave the key to the genetic code that unlocked treatments and vaccines, two family members will have a seat at the table where the decisions are made” (Curtis). In other words, the only compensation
In August of 2013, Talha Khan Burki wrote “Righting a Long-standing Wrong for Henrietta Lacks” for Lancet Oncology. Burki’s purpose was to highlight the problem with the sequence data of patients’ cells (namely, Henrietta Lacks) being publicly released and to inform people of the privacy risks involved. Burki did a very good job at explaining what the issue was, what had been done about it and what needed to happen. Generally, readers struggle and become overwhelmed when they see a large sum of information all at one time. However, while this article provides the reader with several facts, it makes the reader think and Burki did a very well at writing in a manner that prior knowledge of certain terms or concepts are not critical to comprehending. Ideally, an author should use eight elements of critical thinking, and Burki did just that.
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks is a novel by Rebecca Skloot detailing the life of Henrietta Lacks and her family. In her 2010 narrative, Skloot explores the scientific discoveries made through the use of the so-called HeLa cells obtained from Henrietta in her final years, as well as the results of malpractice within segregated hospitals and the effects on the Lacks family. The importance of these topics was only amplified with each new advancement and each new onus transferred to the Lacks family. Consequently, strong held beliefs by both the scientific community and Henrietta’s ancestors clashed.
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot tells the story of Henrietta Lacks, her family, and researchers who have exploited her cell line under the name of advance in medical research. In 1951, when Henrietta Lacks was treated for cervical cancer at John’s Hopkin hospital, a physician collected her cervical cancer cells and handed to a researcher without proper process of informed consent. In a research lab, her cancer cells were harvested and disseminated to other labs. Henrietta’s cancer cells become the first immortal human cell line and became widely used for scientific research. When her cell lines were sold by billions throughout the entire country and HeLa cells became popular research tools in the scientific community,
Henrietta Lacks was thirty years old and found a ‘knot’ on her cervix, which led to her going to Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. She was diagnosed with cervical cancer and treated with radium and x-ray therapy. Some of the tissue was removed from her tumor and sent to George Gey’s lab to be grown in test tubes. Gey was in charge of the Tissue Culture Department at Hopkins and had been researching and experimenting to attempt to make cells to divide so they could have an unlimited supply of cells to experiment on. Henrietta nor her family knew about the tissue sample and neither Gey or Hopkins informed them. They never informed them, even though the cells began to grow rapidly and the scientific world had realized
Humans themselves enacted the most infamous eradication of human life in the history of man. One race has always viewed itself as being the supreme breed. Dehumanization is defined as “[the] failure to attribute feelings or qualities of mind to humans” (Yang, Jin, He, Fan, & Zhu, 2015). By dehumanizing all others, people justify their actions in saying that these things are not human, therefore, they do not feel and think in the same manner. Nazi Germany used this tactic to eradicate the Jews from their country and justify immoral scientific experimentation. Elie Wiesel, a Romanian journalist and Holocaust survivor, spent his life telling the story of people whom the Nazis abstracted (2016). One of his most famous quotes is as follows, “We
Henrietta Lacks, also known as HeLa, is the woman with the immortal cells. Those famous cells eventually would lead to breakthroughs in studies about leukemia, influenza, Parkinson's disease, etc. However, the other side of the story is hardly known. Rebecca Skloot and Deborah Lacks, Henrietta’s daughter, work together to find the unethical methods in which the Lacks family was treated.
HeLa cells were discovered over sixty years ago. HeLa cells have become the foundation to many modern vaccines and have been used in scientific research since its discovery. If one were to step into a cell culture lab anywhere in the world and open its freezers, there would be millions of HeLa cells in small vials behind its doors. As much of a remarkable discovery as they may be, many fail to recognize their origin. HeLa cells were not a creation made by man in a lab, but a discovery found inside a woman. A woman, named Henrietta Lacks.
The book “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks” written by Rebecca Skloot revolves around an African American woman who began life as a poor tobacco farmer, but soon after being diagnosed with cervical cancer in 1951 would unknowingly become one of the most important people in history. Unfortunately many would come to simply know her as “HeLa” the first “immortal” human cell line instead of another human being who had the right to know what doctors would soon do to her. She was strong woman and great mother to five unique children; Elsie, Lawrence, David (Sonny), Deborah, and finally Zakariyya (born Joe). The story itself tends to transition between the past and the present day. It gives us the story from both the perspective of Henrietta’s
Nonfiction books can often expand ones knowledge, especially in the subject of science. In the book, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, writer of the book and journalist Rebecca Scloot finds herself looking at an image of an African American whom had a tumor growing in her body without knowledge of it. This woman in the photo, Henrietta Lacks, although her name was unknown by most scientist and teachers, helped change the face of medicine back then and even today.
#3-Examining how death and the losses were addressed within my African American family is openly discussed and always some one’s fault. The experience of my grandmothers death relates to the statistics of the life expectations of African America. According to (Walsh 2004 p. 56) African American woman life expectancy for older adults is 70.2 years and African American men life span is 66.1 according to the national Vital Statistics Report (Volume, 47 NO.28). My grandmother died young I believe she was 59 years old. She had her very first heart attack when she was in 50 years old and she stopped drinking and gave herself to the lord. She was on so many different medications as a child I was not aware of the different medications she was taken.
Rebecca Skloot wanted to get this word across about how race, class, ethics, and other factors play a role in the science world today. Especially with the need of biological samples for research. When Skloot first found out about the cells, her father had gotten sick with an illness that was undiagnosable. Once it was determined he had brain damage, he had enrolled in a medical study. She had took him to many doctors appointments, and everything for the study. So when her professor begun talking about the HeLa cells, it sparked a similarity with her own father.
Celia, A Slave presents the story of a young slave woman, who in dealing with an abusive master, was pushed to her limit. Melton McLaurin uses this tragic story to illustrate a certain aspect of the institution of slavery. That aspect was the relationship between white masters and their female slaves. This drives McLaurin to discuss the morality of the slave society. Celia’s story offers a powerful insight into the lack of morals in the slave system.