Hela Cell Persuasion Essay

523 Words3 Pages
The woman behind the clump of cells, named HeLa, finally passes after aggressive cervical cancer. Word spreads of her death very quickly to the Gey lab. Gey has an appetite to conduct an autopsy immediately but permission is a necessity. Gey seeks out Day’s permission and finally gets it after a great deal of persuasion. “The way Day remembers it, someone from Hopkins called to tell him Henrietta had died, and to ask permission for an autopsy, and Day said no. A few hours later, when Day went to Hopkins with a cousin to see Henrietta’s body and sign some papers, the doctors asked again about the autopsy. They said they wanted to run tests that might help his children someday. Day’s cousin said it wouldn’t hurt, so eventually Day agreed and…show more content…
HeLa cells are used to conduct these studies. One of the most important studies were done at the Tuskegee Institute and the studies went so well, HeLa cells were being shipped by the trillions. Various studies start all around the world with the HeLa cells as a variable. These studies include but are not limited to the study of chromosomes, cloning, HPV, AIDs, influenza, and parkinson's. Through all these studies, Gey tries to keep Henrietta’s name out of the picture and this results into the Lack’s family never knowing of Henrietta’s success. After a while, Henrietta’s true name is leaked. “So many people knew Henrietta’s name, someone was bound to leak it” (105). “Sure enough, on November 2, 1953, the Minneapolis Star became the first publication to name the woman behind the HeLa cells.” (105).
Going further into the novel, Rebecca scoops in on the Lack’s family background such as Deborah and her son’s life. Skloot mentions Deborah’s struggle with being in an abusive relationship and getting out of the situation. Skloot continues to write about her process through this novel. She discusses how Sonny takes her to the Lawrence's house. “‘You know what is a myth?’ Bobbette snapped from the recliner. ‘Everybody always saying Henrietta Lacks donated those cells. She didn’t donate nothing. They took them and didn’t ask”

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