Medical Ethics Expert Speaks at Book Bridge Project Meeting

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Article by: Joe Clark,


Vence L. Bonham, Jr., a National Institutes of Health expert, will speak about medical ethics and disparities of health treatment for the poor at a meeting of the Book Bridge Project at Prince George’s Community College. Bonham will compare ethical standards in The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks to criteria of today’s healthcare system.  


Bonham is senior advisor to the National Human Genome Research Institute director on genomics and health disparities and chief of the Education and Community Involvement Branch. He also is an associate investigator in the Social and Behavioral Research Branch.  


Wednesday, February 20  

1—2:30 p.m.                


Prince George’s Community College 

Largo Student Center, Rennie Forum 

301 Largo Road  

Largo, MD 20774 


The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks chronicles the life of Henrietta Lacks, a poor black tobacco farmer whose cells were taken without her knowledge. Lacks’ cells became one of the most important tools in medicine, vital for developing the polio vaccine, cloning, gene mapping and in vitro fertilization. Skloot takes the reader on an extraordinary journey, from the “colored” ward of Johns Hopkins Hospital in the 1950s to stark white laboratories with freezers filled with Lacks’ cells.   

The Book Bridge Project at Prince George’s Community College, a community-wide reading and engagement initiative, started in 2005 under the direction of Mary Brown. The purpose of the initiative is to bring Prince George’s County residents and the college community together in a shared learning experience about contemporary issues through literature. 

Prince George’s Community College is a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Two-year Education designated by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security (2010-2015). Established in 1958, Prince George’s Community College provides transfer and career programs that help students transfer to four-year colleges and universities and prepare them for the workforce. Each year, 40,000 students take part in more than 200 academic programs and workforce development and continuing education courses. Located in Largo, Maryland, Prince George’s Community College has additional sites at Joint Base Andrews, University Town Center in Hyattsville, Laurel College Center, Skilled Trades Center in Camp Springs, and Westphalia Training Center in Upper Marlboro. For more information, visit the college website at, follow on  Twitter,  Facebook, Foursquare, LinkedIn and tune-in to Transforming Lives at Prince George’s Community College, Mondays at 11 a.m.  


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