Feb
06
2010

Henrietta everlasting: 1950s cells still alive

Henrietta Lacks (1920-1951): The Harvard Gazette is copyrighted, but no copyright for the image is specified by the magazine.
Henrietta Lacks (1920-1951): The Harvard Gazette is copyrighted, but no copyright for the image is specified by the magazine.Courtesy Harvard University Gazette

Henrietta Lacks 1950s Cells Still Alive, Helping Science

Even though Henrietta Lacks died in 1951, her cells are still alive.
By 1954, Henrietta Lacks' cells known as HeLa were used by Jonas Salk to develop a vaccine for polio.

"In the half-century since Henrietta Lacks' death, her ... cells ... have continually been used for research into cancer, AIDS, the effects of radiation and toxic substances, gene mapping, and countless other scientific pursuits".

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

"A new book by Rebecca Skloot, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, examines the extraordinary impact of HeLa on science and the effects of that unchosen legacy on Lacks’ family." Wired

Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

Cool!

posted on Sat, 02/06/2010 - 8:08pm
sci-after-school's picture
sci-after-school says:

Also heard this NPR story on Henrietta (and the book) this weekend: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=123472238

Very cool, indeed.

posted on Mon, 02/08/2010 - 9:53am

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