2021-10-08 12:22:05

Family of Henrietta Lacks Files Lawsuit over Use of Stolen Cells, Lambasts Racist Medical System

The family of Henrietta Lacks has filed a lawsuit against biotech company Thermo Fisher Scientific for making billions in profit from the “HeLa” cell line.

Henrietta Lacks was an African American patient at Johns Hopkins University Hospital. Doctors kept her tissue samples without her consent for experimental studies while treating her for cervical cancer in 1951.

Benjamin Crump, one of the lawyers for the case, filed 70 years after her death, calls Henrietta Lacks a “cornerstone of modern medicine,” as her cells have since played a part in cancer research, the polio vaccine and even COVID-19 vaccines.

Ron Lacks, author and grandson of Henrietta Lacks, laments the fact that the family was never notified when his grandmother died, and that part of what motivates the lawsuit is to ensure “no other family should ever go through this.”

Democracy Now! produces a daily, global, independent news hour hosted by award-winning journalists Amy Goodman and Juan González. Our reporting includes breaking daily news headlines and in-depth interviews with people on the front lines of the world’s most pressing issues. 

On DN!, you’ll hear a diversity of voices speaking for themselves, providing a unique and sometimes provocative perspective on global events.

Missed an episode?  Check out DN on FSTV VOD anytime or visit the show page for the latest clips.

#FreeSpeechTV is one of the last standing national, independent news networks committed to advancing progressive social change. 

#FSTV is available on Dish, DirectTV, AppleTV, Roku, Sling, and online at freespeech.org.

Amy Goodman Benjamin Crump Cell Line Democracy Now! Free Speech TV HeLa Henrietta Lacks HIPPA Human Rights John Hopkins University Hospital Lawsuit Termo Fisher Scientific

Human Rights and Equality

Rising Up With Sonali

Commentary: Mumia Abu Jamal on the Legacy of Nichelle Nichols

Commentary: Mumia Abu Jamal on the Legacy of Nichelle Nichols

Rising Up With Sonali

“Do the Work” An Anti-Racist Activity Book

“Do the Work” An Anti-Racist Activity Book

Democracy Now!

After a Year of Taliban Control, "Women and Girls of Afghanistan Have Lost Their Right to Be Human"

After a Year of Taliban Control, "Women and Girls of Afghanistan Have Lost Their Right to Be Human"

Democracy Now!

Afghanistan: The Taliban Cracks Down on Women's Rights as U.S. Sanctions Worsen Humanitarian Crisis

Afghanistan: The Taliban Cracks Down on Women's Rights as U.S. Sanctions Worsen Humanitarian Crisis

Related

Rising Up With Sonali

“Do the Work” An Anti-Racist Activity Book

“Do the Work” An Anti-Racist Activity Book

Democracy Now!

"There Are Good Reasons to Defund the FBI. They Have Nothing to Do with Trump": Alex Vitale

"There Are Good Reasons to Defund the FBI. They Have Nothing to Do with Trump": Alex Vitale

Democracy Now!

Mike Pompeo & CIA Sued for Spying on Americans Who Visited Julian Assange in Embassy in U.K.

Mike Pompeo & CIA Sued for Spying on Americans Who Visited Julian Assange in Embassy in U.K.

Democracy Now!

Top U.S. & World Headlines — August 16, 2022

Top U.S. & World Headlines — August 16, 2022

Proud Partners