The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

  • Interviews

Oprah Winfrey and Rose Byrne of Henrietta Lacks

The case of Henrietta Lacks and the cancer cells harvested from her biopsy, which became the source of an “immortalized” cell line used by science research labs worldwide, sits squarely at the crossroads of science, ethics and racial identity in America. For all the scientific advances that came from using the cells unbeknownst to the patient or her family, the story, first told in depth by reporter Rebecca Skloot, is emblematic of the sometimes-equivocal ethics that bind scientific research.