By Becky Ferreira Feb 26, 2013
Henrietta Lacks and Her Immortal Cells
Henrietta Lacks was a tobacco farmer who tragically passed away from cancer in 1951 (at only 31). Before her death, her doctors took cell samples from her and discovered something astonishing: her cells didn't die. Her cell line revolutionized treatment to a number of diseases including polio, cancer, AIDs, and countless others, with samples being sent around the world and sold by the billion. One woman affected millions of lives; her line is now known as HeLa after her (a sample is pictured here).