Absolutely fascinating story. I came across this first a few weeks ago in a Nature podcast.
From the page: What are the lessons from this book?
For scientists, one of the lessons is that there are human beings behind every biological sample used in the laboratory. So much of science today revolves around using human biological tissue of some kind. For scientists, cells are often just like tubes or fruit flies -- they're just inanimate tools that are always there in the lab. The people behind those samples often have their own thoughts and feelings about what should happen to their tissues, but they're usually left out of the equation.
This excerpt above shows me the sick side of American views on property rights. Cells do not have rights! Cancer cells cannot get 'tortured'! The people behind those samples started having feelings only when they discovered someone was making a profit. Were the Lacks so sentimental about Henrietta's nail-clippings or excrement? Are they so sentimental about their own excrement? Is it OK for people to claim rights on what they would otherwise consider junk?
This makes a good case for all such 'junk' to be considered as being in the public domain.