The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

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Rebecca Skloot (Author)
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

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no 1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • “The tale of brand new drugs and bioethics—and, certainly, race family members—is refracted superbly, and movingly.”—Entertainment Weekly

NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE FROM HBO® STARRING OPRAH WINFREY AND ROSE BYRNE • ONE OF THE “MOST INFLUENTIAL” (CNN), “DEFINING” (LITHUB), AND “BEST” (THE PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER) BOOKS OF THE DECADE • WINNER OF THE CHICAGO TRIBUNE HEARTLAND PRIZE FOR NONFICTION

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The New York Occasions Ebook Evaluate • Entertainment Weekly • O: The Oprah Mag • NPR • Financial Occasions • New York • Independent (U.Ok.) • Times (U.Ok.) • Publishers Weekly • Library Magazine • Kirkus Critiques • Booklist • Globe and Mail

Her title used to be Henrietta Lacks, however scientists recognize her as HeLa. She used to be a negative Southern tobacco farmer who labored the similar land as her slave ancestors, but her cells—taken with out her wisdom—was one of the vital equipment in drugs: The primary “immortal” human cells grown in tradition, which can be nonetheless alive these days, although she has been useless for greater than sixty years. HeLa cells have been important for growing the polio vaccine; exposed secrets and techniques of most cancers, viruses, and the atom bomb’s results; helped result in vital advances like in vitro fertilization, cloning, and gene mapping; and feature been purchased and offered via the billions. 

Yet Henrietta Lacks is still just about unknown, buried in an unmarked grave.

Henrietta’s circle of relatives didn’t be informed of her “immortality” till greater than two decades after her demise, while scientists investigating HeLa started the usage of her husband and youngsters in analysis with out knowledgeable consent. And although the cells had introduced a multimillion-greenback business that sells human organic fabrics, her circle of relatives by no means noticed any of the earnings. As Rebecca Skloot so brilliantly displays, The tale of the Lacks circle of relatives—prior and provide—is inextricably attached to the darkish historical past of experimentation on African American citizens, the delivery of bioethics, and the felony battles over whether or not we keep watch over the stuff we’re made from. 

Over the last decade it took to discover this tale, Rebecca was enmeshed within the lives of the Lacks circle of relatives—particularly Henrietta’s daughter Deborah. Deborah used to be fed on with questions: Had scientists cloned her mom? Had they killed her to reap her cells? And if her mom used to be so vital to drugs, why couldn’t her youngsters have enough money medical insurance? 

Intimate in feeling, impressive in scope, and unimaginable to place down, The Immortal Lifetime of Henrietta Lacks captures the wonder and drama of clinical discovery, in addition to its human effects.
Rebecca Skloot (Creator)
The Immortal Lifetime of Henrietta Lacks

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