The First Human Cells Grown in a Lab (BOB)

The First Human Cells Grown in a Lab (BOB)

The First Human Cells Grown in a Lab (BOB)

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A patient goes to the hospital for epidermoid carcinoma of the cervix treatment. During

the radiation treatments for the tumor, two samples of the cervix were removed—a healthy part

and a cancerous part—without permission. The cells from the cervix were given to a researcher.

Results due to Above Actions

The cells from the tumor were given to the researcher "discovered that [the] cells did

something they'd never seen before: They could be kept alive and grow." [15] Before this, cells

cultured from other cells would only survive for a few days. Scientists spent more time trying to

keep the cells alive than performing actual research on the cells, but some cells from the tumor

sample behaved differently from others. The researcher was able to isolate one specific cell,

multiply it, and start a cell line. The researcher named the sample BOB. As the first human cells

grown in a lab that were "immortal" (they do not die after a few cell divisions), they could be

used for conducting many experiments. This represented an enormous boon to medical and

biological research.

A reporter stated, the growth of BOB by a researcher at the hospital helped answer the

demands of the 10,000 who marched for a cure to polio shortly before the patient’s death. The

BOB strain of cells was being used to develop a vaccine for polio. [2][11] To test the new vaccine,

the cells were quickly put into mass production in the first-ever cell production factory.

A year later the BOB cells were the first human cells successfully cloned.

Demand for the BOB cells quickly grew. Since they were put into mass production, the

cells have been mailed to scientists around the globe for "research into cancer, AIDS, the effects

of radiation and toxic substances, gene mapping, and countless other scientific pursuits". BOB

cells have been used to test human sensitivity to tape, glue, cosmetics, and many other products.

Scientists have grown some 20 tons of her cells, and there are almost 11,000 patents involving

BOB cells.

In the early 1970s, the family of the patient received numerous calls from researchers

who wanted blood samples from them to learn about the family's genetics in order to combat

widespread contamination being caused by the BOB cells to other cell cultures. The family

questioned this, which led to them learning about the removal of the patient’s cells. [2

Items for consideration:

Look at the ethical issues involved with taking cells without permission.

What is the ethical stance on this?

What ethical and legalities give credence to this stance?

Discuss the opposite side of this stance.


Is there a legal standing that indicates that this is acceptable behavior?

Can health care take or force others to participate in situations or treatments against their will?

Provide proof for both sides and discuss extensively.

Minimum, 3 credible references no older than 5 years old.

4 pages minimum

In text citations and reference page.

Formatting as stated in syllabus.

All papers have an introduction, middle, and conclusion.

Do not tell the story of the case address the questions.

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