The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks has been released in paperback, after spending the past year on multiple best-seller lists. Skloot’s groundbreaking book traces a chapter in medical history that combines questions of medical research and bioethics with issues of race and class.
In 1951, while Henrietta Lacks was being treated at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, doctors took a sample of her cancerous cells and gave it to a hospital pathologist working on cell culture studies. Nearly 60 years later, these cells are still alive. For a reason that remained mysterious for years, Henrietta Lacks’ cells kept growing and growing. Today, virtually any scientist in the world who works in the field of cell culture has worked with the famed HeLa cells – a short version of Lacks’ name.
Author Rebecca Skloot and Sound Medicine host Barbara Lewis will be joined by IU bioethicist Eric Meslin, Ph.D., who will discuss the current practical implications of Skloot’s work when it comes to medical research and informed consent.
Sound Medicine is an award-winning radio program co-produced by the Indiana University School of Medicine and WFYI Public Radio (90.1FM). Sound Medicine is underwritten by Indiana University Health, Indiana University Health Physicians, and Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. Reports on Primary Health Care topics are sponsored by Wishard Health Services.
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