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Science

The Immortal Cell 157

Posted by michael
from the purgatory dept.
chromatin writes: "A filmmaker at a college in boston has been working on the potentially endless history of Henrietta Lacks which is a fascinating story of where biotechnology comes from and what it does. Lacks died of cervical cancer in 1951, but a small sample of her cancer cells were found to live in culture dishes... and still do. As the first immortal human cell line, HeLa cells are used by researchers today for lots of experiments which whole people simply can't or shouldn't be used for. Working in labs like this with cells like this for several years, it's the first time I've heard her entire name! The Lacks family has never been compensated or really recognized by the scientific community - is this how patenting genes will work?" An odd story, that I've heard mentioned before but never knew much about.
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The Immortal Cell

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