- NAME: Henrietta Lacks
- BIRTH DATE: August 01, 1920
- DEATH DATE: October 04, 1951
- Did You Know?: Cells taken from Henrietta Lacks's body without her knowledge were used to form the HeLa cell line, which has been used extensively in medical research.
- PLACE OF BIRTH: Roanoke, Virginia
- PLACE OF DEATH: Baltimore, Maryland
- Full Name: Loretta Pleasant
- Nickname: Hennie
- AKA: Henrietta Lacks
Best Known For
Henrietta Lacks is best known as the source of cells that form the HeLa line, used extensively in medical research since the 1950s.
Think you know about Biography?
Answer questions and see how you rank against other players.Play Now
The Lacks family has been honored at the Smithsonian Institution and the National Foundation for Cancer Research. Morgan State University granted Lacks a posthumous honorary degree. In 2010, Dr. Roland Pattillo of Morehouse donated a headstone for Lacks's unmarked grave.
The HeLa case has raised questions about the legality of using genetic materials without permission. Neither Lacks nor her family granted permission to harvest her cells, which were then cloned and sold. The California Supreme Court upheld the right to commercialize discarded tissue in the 1990 case Moore v. Regents of the University of California. In 2013, German researchers published the genome of a strain of HeLa cells without permission from the Lacks family.
The Lacks family has had limited success in gaining control of the HeLa strain. In August 2013, an agreement between the family and the National Institutes of Health granted the family acknowledgement in scientific papers and some oversight of the Lacks genome.
© 2014 A+E Networks. All rights reserved.
profile name: Henrietta Lacks profile occupation:
Sign in with Facebook to see how you and your friends are connected to famous icons.
Your Friends' Connections
Included In These Groups
Famous Leos 558 people in this group
Famous People Born in 1920 57 people in this group
Famous People Born in Virginia 116 people in this group