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Quotes About Medical Research

Quotes tagged as "medical-research" (showing 1-9 of 9)
Amir D. Aczel
“[Davidson] Black procured cadavers for research, obtained from the Peking police department. These cadavers were mostly of people who had been executed for various crimes; the police regularly sent Black truckloads of the bodies of the executed convicts. Execution in China was by beheading, and thus the cadavers Black received lacked heads and had mutilated necks. After some time, he asked the police whether there was any possibility of getting better dead bodies for research - corpses that were intact. The next day, he received a shipment of convicts, all chained together, with a note from the police asking him to kill them in any way he chose.”
Amir D. Aczel, The Jesuit and the Skull: Teilhard de Chardin, Evolution, and the Search for Peking Man

Rebecca Skloot
“many scientists have interfered with science in precisely the way courts always worried tissue donors might do. “It’s ironic,” she told me. “The Moore court’s concern was, if you give a person property rights in their tissues, it would slow down research because people might withhold access for money. But the Moore decision backfired—it just handed that commercial value to researchers.” According to Andrews and a dissenting California Supreme Court judge, the ruling didn’t prevent commercialization; it just took patients out of the equation and emboldened scientists to commodify tissues in increasing numbers. Andrews and many others have argued that this makes scientists less likely to share samples and results, which slows research; they also worry that it interferes with health-care delivery.”
Rebecca Skloot

Rebecca Skloot
“Nelson-Rees had since been hired by the National Cancer Institute to help stop the contamination problem. He would become known as a vigilante who published “HeLa Hit Lists” in Science, listing any contaminated lines he found, along with the names of researchers who’d given him the cells. He didn’t warn researchers when he found that their cells had been contaminated with HeLa; he just published their names, the equivalent of having a scarlet H pasted on your lab door.”
Rebecca Skloot, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

Rebecca Skloot
“Gene patents are the point of greatest concern in the debate over ownership of human biological materials, and how that ownership might interfere with science. As of 2005—the most recent year figures were available—the U.S. government had issued patents relating to the use of about 20 percent of known human genes, including genes for Alzheimer’s, asthma, colon cancer, and, most famously, breast cancer. This means pharmaceutical companies, scientists, and universities control what research can be done on those genes, and how much resulting therapies and diagnostic tests will cost. And some enforce their patents aggressively: Myriad Genetics, which holds the patents on the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes responsible for most cases of hereditary breast and ovarian cancer, charges $3,000 to test for the genes. Myriad has been accused of creating a monopoly, since no one else can offer the test, and researchers can’t develop cheaper tests or new therapies without getting permission from Myriad and paying steep licensing fees. Scientists who’ve gone ahead with research involving the breast-cancer genes without Myriad’s permission have found themselves on the receiving end of cease-and-desist letters and threats of litigation.”
Rebecca Skloot

Rebecca Skloot
“Ultimately the judge threw Moore’s suit out of court, saying he had no case. Ironically, in his decision, the judge cited the HeLa cell line as a precedent for what happened with the Mo cell line. The fact that no one had sued over the growth or ownership of the HeLa cell line, he said, illustrated that patients didn’t mind when doctors took their cells and turned them into commercial products. The judge believed Moore was unusual in his objections. But in fact, he was simply the first to realize there was something potentially objectionable going on.”
Rebecca Skloot

Rebecca Skloot
“The American Type Culture Collection—a nonprofit whose funds go mainly toward maintaining and providing pure cultures for science—has been selling HeLa since the sixties. When this book went to press, their price per vial was $256. The ATCC won’t reveal how much money it brings in from HeLa sales each year, but since HeLa is one of the most popular cell lines in the world, that number is surely significant.”
Rebecca Skloot, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

Rebecca Skloot
“Soon after Harris’s HeLa-chicken study, a pair of researchers at New York University discovered that human-mouse hybrids lost their human chromosomes over time, leaving only the mouse chromosomes. This allowed scientists to begin mapping human genes to specific chromosomes by tracking the order in which genetic traits vanished. If a chromosome disappeared and production of a certain enzyme stopped, researchers knew the gene for that enzyme must be on the most recently vanished chromosome. Scientists in laboratories throughout North America and Europe began fusing cells and using them to map genetic traits to specific chromosomes, creating a precursor to the human genome map we have today.”
Rebecca Skloot, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

Rebecca Skloot
“Since the Common Rule says that research subjects must be allowed to withdraw from research at any time, these experts have told me that, in theory, the Lacks family might be able to withdraw HeLa cells from all research worldwide. And in fact, there are precedents for such a case, including one in which a woman successfully had her father’s DNA removed from a database in Iceland. Every researcher I’ve mentioned that idea to shudders at the thought of it.”
Rebecca Skloot, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

“There is no cell culture for depression. You can't see it on a bone scan or an x-ray. Not everyone with depression will show the same behavioral symptoms.”
Chris Prentiss, The Alcoholism and Addiction Cure

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