What does HeLa stands for?

Nick Theodorakis nicholas_theodorakis at urmc.rochester.edu
Tue Feb 8 13:39:47 EST 2000


In article <949704817.18612.0.nnrp-02.c2de40bb at news.demon.co.uk>,
"Nigel Dyer" <nigel.dyer at luke1017.demon.co.uk> wrote:
>One thing that I have often wondered about is if these HeLa
cells are so
>hardy, and managed to contaminate so many cultures then is it
not likely
>that they have been 'contaminating' people as well and causing
cancer?
>

"Hardiness" is a relative term here. They are not going to
survive
when dried out, subject to extremes of osmolarity or pH, or even
hand-washing. And, as other people have pointed out, they almost
certainly won't survive your immune system. (Actually it's rather
tricky to get many tissue-culture adapted cell lines to grow as a
tumor in an animal, even in an isogenic or immunodeficient
animal.)

Also, IMO, most of the contamination of other cell lines is
probably due to sloppy technique.


Nick Theodorakis

nicholas_theodorakis at urmc.rochester.edu

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