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Response to appalachiablue (Original post)

Wed Oct 13, 2021, 09:32 PM

5. Heard on the news earlier this week that her family is suing the company that benefited

and had also heard reports of them suing Johns Hopkins as well although the below article indicates that they were not yet party to the suit.

(when I worked as a chemist in the lab, Thermo-Fisher was a scientific equipment and supplies manufacturer)

Henrietta Lacks' family sues Thermo Fisher


On the 70th anniversary of her death, the family of Henrietta Lacks filed a lawsuit against the biotech company Thermo Fisher Scientific for the commercialization of her now-famous cell line. Lacks’ descendants argue that the company profited from the cell line long after its unethical origins were publicly known. In 1951, Lacks was undergoing treatment for cervical cancer in a segregated surgical ward at the Hopkins Hospital. Without her consent or knowledge, a biopsy of her cells was sent to the hospital laboratory of Dr. George Gey for research. Unlike other cell cultures that died quickly after arrival in Gey’s office, Lacks’ cells continued to divide — indefinitely.

This immortal cell line, now known as HeLa cells, soon became a foundational tool for research. Lacks’ cells contributed to the development of the polio vaccine, in vitro fertilization and recently SARS-Cov-2 replication in human cells. Many accomplishments of modern medicine can be credited to HeLa cells. Currently, Thermo Fisher sells HeLa cells to researchers for upwards of $2,000 per milliliter depending on whether the cells are modified. Neither Lacks nor her descendants have received any financial compensation for the use of her cells. On Oct. 4, the family sued Thermo Fisher for the intellectual property of HeLa cells, as well as any profits related to the cell line.

Attorney Benjamin Crump, who represented the families of George Floyd and Trayvon Martin, is representing the family in the suit. Though some members of the Lacks family have previously mentioned legal action against the Hopkins Hospital, the institution is not a defendant in this suit. In June 2020, following Floyd's murder, Thermo Fisher Senior Vice President and President of Customer Channels Fred Lowry launched a $20-million social justice campaign with other Massachusetts executives to address systemic racism. In February, the company released a statement that it had donated $25 million toward minority-serving financial institutions.

In an interview with The News-Letter, Crump explained that the family is suing Thermo Fisher in order to hold it and other pharmaceutical companies accountable for their public commitments to social justice. “If you want to hold to the word that you are sincere in your commitment to social justice that you made after George Floyd, then why won’t you do right by Henrietta Lacks?” Crump said. Crump also stated that the Lacks family’s legal demands are based on strong legal precedents from inheritance law.


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appalachiablue Oct 2021 OP
Maru Kitteh Oct 2021 #1
woodsprite Oct 2021 #2
gblady Oct 2021 #3
elleng Oct 2021 #4
appalachiablue Oct 2021 #6
LineReply Heard on the news earlier this week that her family is suing the company that benefited
BumRushDaShow Oct 2021 #5
elleng Oct 2021 #7
Ron Obvious Oct 2021 #10
BumRushDaShow Oct 2021 #11
Ron Obvious Oct 2021 #14
BumRushDaShow Oct 2021 #15
Ron Obvious Oct 2021 #16
BumRushDaShow Oct 2021 #17
Ron Obvious Oct 2021 #18
hoosierspud Oct 2021 #8
NotANeocon Oct 2021 #9
Bayard Oct 2021 #12
LT Barclay Oct 2021 #13
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