One Book, One Bakersfield, One Kern program began with social history story of medical advancement

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - The Kern County Library and other groups kicked off the 2013 One Book, One Bakersfield, One Kern program Monday.

One Book, One Bakersfield, One Kern invites the entire community to read one great book and relate its powerful themes to our lives in Bakersfield and Kern County. 

Doctors and cancer survivors spoke about the selected book--"The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks"--the story of a young black woman in the 1951 whose cancer cells became the first to survive and replicate outside the human body.

Though important research was performed with the resulting HeLa cells and a vaccine for polio.

They were obtained without her or her family's permission.

The book raises discussions about medical research, public health and social issues.

The speaker said the book offers important messages for anyone.

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