The immortal life of Henrietta lacks

 The immortal life of Henrietta lacks

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks involves the immortal life of a human cell and the theme concerns unawareness. The two poems described in this paper uses Robert Frost’s model.

Immortality of a human cell

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Immortality is the capability of something living forever. The human, animal or plant cells can be preserved in medical and agricultural laboratories, which can assist doctors and agricultural experts in doing research about the diseases. The human, animal or plant cells are categorized depending with the body tissues and organs.

When diseases attacks or affects people, animals or plant they interfere with their cells (Skloot, 2010). The infection can result to swelling, itching, mental problem or even cause death to the infected. The plants can start rotting, breaking or drying up. Cancer usually affects the brain, skin, breast, lung and prostate cells.

Cancer is a combination of diseases with various possible causes. Cancer is caused by genetic factors, environmental exposures, lifestyle factors and a group of infections. The human genes of the predecessors can affect their descendants in a family lineage.

Some people get risk of being affected by cancer through inheriting from their parents, but not common. The human lifestyles such as the physical activities, diet or tobacco use can cause cancer (Skloot, 2010). Tobacco contains tar, which usually affects the lungs and the throat affecting their cells resulting to cancer. Other drugs such as cocaine and bhang affect the brain cells, which can cause brain cancer.

Some diets contain harmful antibiotics that can interfere with the body. Alcohol consumption can also cause cancer. Much exposure to sun radiations or other harmful radiations from machines such as x-ray machine also increases the chances of being affected by skin cancer (Skloot, 2010).

Water and air pollution and some medical treatments and tests can also cause cancer if they interfere with body cells. However, the affected different body cells can be extracted from human organs and preserved where some can live forever while others cannot. The living cell assists the doctors in doing research about curing the various types of cancers.

 The immortal life of Henrietta lacks
Henrietta lacks


Unawareness is the state of not being familiar on what has happened or been happening. It is a common thing that usually happens in people’s lives. The issue of unawareness can last for a long time in decades or centuries. Unawareness covers many fields involving human activities such as education, economy, business, health among others. Most people live without the consent of their body health. Accidents can occur, or diseases affect the people resulting to injuries, lower immune system or death to the involved where some may continue living without knowing their living state (Skloot, 2010).

If a person dies under any condition forensic autopsy should be carried out in order to reveal the cause of death. The doctors or medical experts usually extract some organs or tissue for examination where after examination they can be beneficial in the future.

 The immortal life of Henrietta lacks
Henrietta lacks and her husband

The infected tissues or organs of the infected persons can be removed from the body for laboratory test where some may not reveal the cause, but used in other medical analysis. The Henrietta’s family was not aware of the cause of Henrietta’s death and the existence of her cells in a medical center until it was revealed by Rebecca Skloot after 37 years (Skloot, 2010). Deborah, who was Henrietta’s daughter, was left questioning about her mother’s life, immortality and death.


Skloot, R. (2010). The immortal life of Henrietta Lacks. New York: Crown Publishers.

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