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Fifth Annual Henrietta Lacks Memorial Lecture at Johns Hopkins - 10/09/2014

Fifth Annual Henrietta Lacks Memorial Lecture at Johns Hopkins

Release Date: October 9, 2014

Dorothy Roberts, author of Fatal Invention: How Science, Politics, and Big Business Recreate Race in the Twenty-First Century, will deliver the keynote address at the fifth annual Henrietta Lacks Memorial Lecture this Saturday, Oct. 11, at 9 a.m. in Turner Auditorium on the campus of the Johns Hopkins Hospital and School of Medicine. Admission to the lecture is free.

Roberts, a University of Pennsylvania professor of Africana studies, law and sociology, will discuss issues of race and biomedical research.

The annual lecture, presented by the Johns Hopkins Institute for Clinical and Translational Research, honors the legacy of Henrietta Lacks and features conversations about ethical issues related to clinical research. 

Henrietta Lacks was a young mother of five from eastern Baltimore County who, despite radiation treatment at The Johns Hopkins Hospital, died in 1951 of an aggressive cancer. In those days, doctors and scientists regularly used tissue samples for research purposes without patient consent. The small tissue sample taken from Mrs. Lacks yielded cells that would help advance scientific and medical research for decades; where other samples bore cells that died in days or even hours, Mrs. Lacks’ cells divided and lived on. To this day, HeLa cells — named for Henrietta Lacks — are advancing science and medicine all around the world. The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and all the Johns Hopkins institutions are proud of — and grateful to be associated with — Henrietta Lacks and her family. Our research honors Mrs. Lacks’ legacy and her contribution to science and medicine.

This year’s lecture will feature a panel discussion and extended question-and-answer session with Roberts; Veronica Spencer, great-granddaughter of Henrietta Lacks and member of the HeLa Genome Data Access Working Group at the National Institutes of Health; and Johns Hopkins experts in the areas of cervical cancer, research ethics, genomics and research patient advocacy.

At the lecture, the Johns Hopkins Urban Health Institute will announce this year’s winner of its Henrietta Lacks Memorial Community Award and the Henrietta Lacks Dunbar Health Sciences Scholarship.

Established in 2007, the Johns Hopkins Institute for Clinical and Translational Research is part of a national consortium of more than 60 medical research institutions working together to improve the way biomedical research is conducted across the country.

Saturday, Oct. 11, 2014
9 a.m.
Turner Auditorium, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
720 Rutland Ave., Baltimore Md. 21205

Parking and directions
A map of the main level of the hospital can be found here:
Oversized vehicles can park on Monument Street outside the auditorium.