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    Henrietta Lacks' Story Performed by Students from Mount Carmel Christian School

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    March 31, 2011

    Media Contact
    Rosalyn Barnes
    Phone: (404) 752-1735
    rbarnes@msm.edu

    Children from the Mount Carmel Christian School in Stone Mountain Presents an Original Play about Henrietta Lacks

    The Advancing Science in America (ARCS) Foundation’s Book Review was recently held in the Louis W. Sullivan National Center for Primary Care, E. Ginger Sullivan Atrium.  The event featured Roland Pattillo, M.D., professor in the department of obstetrics and gynecology of Morehouse School of Medicine, along with some very young book lovers.  Dr. Pattillo and the CRIL-HELA (Committee to Recognize the Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks), presented an original play to the ARCS Foundation members based on Rebecca Skloot’s bestselling book, “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.”

    Approximately 45 students from the Mount Carmel Christian School in Stone Mountain, Georgia performed the play written by their teacher, Ms. Lauriette Johnson.

    HeLa Women's Health Conference
    Since 1996, Roland H. Pattillo, M.D., professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology of Morehouse School of Medicine, has hosted the annual HeLa Women's Health Conference.   Named in honor of Henrietta Lacks, the African-American woman who died at the age of 31 in Baltimore, MD from cervical cancer, Ms. Lacks was the source of HeLa cells - the first breakthrough in growing human cells outside the body.   Deborah Lacks, one of five children left motherless by Henrietta’s death, along with her father and brothers were invited to the initial HeLa conference on the subject of cancer control in Atlanta, Georgia in October 1996. The conference was filmed as a documentary by the BBC in 1998 and in 2010, Alan Ball teamed with Oprah Winfrey's Harpo Films to produce an HBO telepic based on the bestseller "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks" by Rebecca Skloot.  The 2011 HeLa conference will be held on September 23, 2011.

    Listen to Dr. Pattillo discuss the significance of the play being performed by students.

    Advancing Science in America Foundation
    Science and technology have long been key to America’s continued economic growth and prosperity.   As the number of well-trained scientists grows worldwide, our nation is in serious danger of losing its competitive edge.

    For a quarter of a century, U.S. funding for basic research has shifted away from physical science, math and engineering, while the number of our young people seeking advanced degrees in these fields has dropped alarmingly.  Foreign competition in these disciplines, by contrast, continues to soar.

    The ARCS Foundation is fighting to remedy this trend.  By partnering with the very best universities around the country, the ARCS Foundation Chapters help recruit and reward the most promising U.S. scholars in scientific, medical and technological fields of study.