Henrietta Lacks (HeLa): The Mother of Modern Medicine by Kadir Nelson (detail, above) is on view at the National Portrait Gallery through November 4, 2018.

Famed for “Immortal” Cells, Henrietta Lacks is Immortalized in Portraiture

Lacks's cells gave rise to medical miracles, but ethical questions of propriety and ownership continue to swirl

Sumit Bhatnagar, a PhD student in chemical engineering at the University of Michigan, inspects tumor cells used in developing a new diagnostic pill.

Could a Pill Help Detect Breast Cancer?

University of Michigan researchers are developing a pill that when ingested causes tumors to glow under infrared light

California Coffee Companies Must Display Cancer Warning Label, Judge Rules

Despite the ruling, the links between coffee and cancer remain unclear

The above image shows the dermal interstitium with bundles of collagen and fluid (white spaces).

Scientists May Have Identified a New Human Organ

It is called the interstitium, and it consists of fluid-filled cavities that can be found throughout the body

An illustration depicting the life cycle of a cancer cell

This DNA-Based Attack Against Cancer May Just Work

A newly approved treatment is a milestone in gene therapy for cancer

Macrophages begin to fuse with, and inject its toxins into, the cancer cell. The cell starts rounding up and loses its spikes.

Where We Are in the Hunt for a Cancer Vaccine

Two new studies have promising results

Vanessa Brandon worried that her cancer was a burden on her family: “I don’t want my sickness to become their sickness.”

Could Immunotherapy Lead the Way to Fighting Cancer?

A new treatment that uses the body's own immune system to fight cancer is offering hope to patients with advanced disease

For all their flaws, lab mice have become an invaluable research model for genetics, medicine, neuroscience and more. But few people know the story of the first standardized lab mice.

The History of Breeding Mice for Science Begins With a Woman in a Barn

Far more than a mouse fancier, Abbie Lathrop helped establish the standard mouse model and pioneered research into cancer inheritance

"The Night," Michele di Rodolfo del Ghirlandaio, oil on panel, Galleria Colonna, Rome, Italy

Earliest Images of Breast Cancer Found in Renaissance Paintings

The signs of illness in the paintings illustrate that breast cancer is not just a modern malady

Nine Innovators to Watch in 2018

Meet a group of trailblazers in medicine, education, art, transportation, artificial intelligence and more

The sKan device detects minute temperature changes associated with melanoma.

This Inexpensive Scanning Device Could Catch Skin Cancer Early

A team of biomedical engineers has won this year's Dyson Award for "the sKan," which detects the thermal changes associated with melanoma

Stopping the Aging Process May Be Mathematically Impossible

Researchers find that removing low-functioning cells can slow aging—but allows cancer cells to proliferate

The device is a pen-sized mass spectrometry device its developers are calling MasSpec Pen.

Scientists Invent a Pen That Can Detect Cancer in Seconds

This handheld mass spectrometer could make surgeries to remove cancerous tissue quicker and more accurate

A man named Georgios Papanicolaou invented the Pap smear, but Elizabeth Stern helped figure out how to interpret it.

Why The Pap Test Could Also Be Called the Stern Test

Elizabeth Stern played a vital role in cervical cancer testing and treatment

An apricot seed and the kernels found within them

Man Poisons Himself by Taking Apricot Kernels to Treat Cancer

Many believe these seeds can fight cancer, but there's no scientific evidence to back up the claim

An image of cells showing Zika virus (highlighted green) targeting the cancerous stem cells (highlighted red) of a human glioblastoma tumor

How Zika Virus Could Be Used to Fight Brain Cancer

The same properties that make Zika virus devastating to fetal brains could be turned against cancer cells

Genetically modified immune cells ready to be reintroduced back into a person and attack leukemia.

First Gene Therapy Treatment Approved in U.S.

By modifying a person's own immune cells, the treatment can effectively target leukemia cells

Woman Wins $417 Million in Lawsuit Tying Baby Powder to Ovarian Cancer

But the association between talc and cancer continues to be debated by the scientific community

Dogs Will Sniff Out Stomach Cancer in New Japanese Trial

The nose knows

Don't stop slathering on the sunblock, but a technology being developed in the lab could add an additional layer of protection, by tanning skin cells without UV rays.

Researchers Give Skin Cells a Tan—Without the Sun

Without damaging UV rays, the artificial tan could give that golden glow while protecting against skin cancer.

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