Henrietta Skloot

823 Words4 Pages
In the year of 1988, a woman named Rebecca Skloot first learned about a woman known as Henrietta Lacks. Ever since then, Skloot had been deeply fascinated by her. Henrietta is quite fascinating, and did wonders for the world of science. It started in the year of 1951, when Lacks was just 31 years old. She first noticed she was bleeding, when it was not her time of the month. From then on, she began seeing a doctor in John Hopkins hospital for check-ups and treatments for cervical cancer. During one of her treatments, a doctor took a sample of her “knot” and passed it on to another doctor in the building to test it. This doctor was named George Gey, and he was trying to make the first immortal human cell line. However, every time he tried, it just did not seem to work. When Gey’s assistants began to grow Henrietta 's cells, they expected them to just die. But that’s not what happened. They created the first immortal human-cell line. From that point on, HeLa cells were in high demand.…show more content…
The biggest theme she really portrayed I believe was the Medical Developments that Henrietta’s cells helped with. During the 1900’s, the poliovirus was big, and deadly. With the help of HeLa, they created a vaccine for it. This saved many lives, and I feel was important to talk about in the book. Another very big medical development was being able to create the first immortal human-cell line. They had been trying to do this for awhile before the first one was created, so it was a very important event. The next big topic Skloot discussed was poverty. Money was tight in the Lacks family, especially since they had lots of health issues. When the Lacks family found out about the cells, they were extremely angered that people were making profit off of them, and they could not even get health insurance. The family believed that since those were her cells, who were used for science, they should be able to make money off of
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