The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

Henritta lacks.jpg

Format: Audiobook

Source: Public Library

Rating: 4.25

Though most of us may not know Henrietta Lacks, we have all benefited from her short life.  Actually, I guess we benefited from her death more than her life.  Henrietta had an aggressive form of cervical cancer. Some of her cells were taken and have been used to test all kinds of drugs, diseases, radiation, and have even been sent to the moon.  Skloot looks to give the back story of the HELA cells and the family they belonged to.

Henrietta was married to her cousin and had 5 children.  Most of this book is Skloot and Henrietta’s daughter Deborah going to John Hopkins and other medical facilities trying to find out more about Henrietta.

Overall this book was highly enjoyable.  Skloot tries to explain cells and all thing ways they were used medically in ways that someone with no knowledge could understand.  Skloot does a nice job of trying to get the real story of Henrietta, her cells, and most of all her family.  This book touches on generational poverty, inbreeding, medical/scientific ethics.


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