Black Cottage

Black Cottage

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Let me introduce you to Henrietta Lacks. She was a young mother of five small children who died of cervical cancer in 1951, yet she has achieved a measure of immortality in a strangely macabre sort of way. Doctors harvested some of her cancer cells, which proved to be particularly aggressive. Over the past fifty years generations of this laboratory-grown cell line, called qHeLaq for qHenrietta Lacks, q have been used for a wide variety of biomedical research purposes. Literally tens of thousands of articles have appeared in the scientific literature since that time which involve the use of Henrietta Is remarkably vigorous posterity. Particularly chilling is the fact that on numerous occasions other cell lines have accidentally become contaminated with HeLa cells. When this has happened, HeLa cells rapidly killed the original cells. All of the above is true. Black Cottage involves a medical school oncologist who, funded by old-guard Russian communists, genetically engineers a frighteningly virulent HeLa cell line which is capable of infecting and killing humans. In performing his tests with HeLa, the infection spreads out of control, and over a dozen people become infected. Jim Burningham, an epidemiologist at the same medical school, reluctantly finds himself thrust into the role of medical detective. He must discover why a handful of individuals, though infected, do not become ill, while all others suffer a rapid, agonizing death. His job of finding the cure becomes intensely personal when he unintentionally infects a friend with HeLa.a€œJust a bad starter, a€ he explained casually. a€œSometimes it takes a few tries before it clicks in, a€ he said, trying again unsuccessfully. a€œIf you know ita#39;s a bad starter, why dona#39;t you just get it fixed, a€ Jerry questioned incredulously. a€œOh, ita#39;s never failedanbsp;...

Title:Black Cottage
Author:Tom Dudley
Publisher:Xlibris Corporation - 2001-08-22


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