Agony for roxanna!
Her meddling into Professor Gaskell’s trial has tragic consequences, as Hermione Gulliford reveals…
Q How did neurosurgeon Roxanna MacMillan go from wanting to be part of Professor John Gaskell’s pioneering stem cell trial, to stepping down from it, then ‘investigating’ her friend? A Roxanna always wanted to be part of Gaskell’s trial because she admires the radical way he’s trying to change modern medicine. But she now fears his ambition to find a cure for degenerative diseases is at the expense of the patients involved. I don’t think Roxanna believes Gaskell’s doing anything purposefully manipulative, it’s just that he’s become all-consumed by this trial and she needs to find out the truth about what’s going on.
Q Roxanna gains access to Gaskell’s lab in a bid to hunt for some information on him. What does she find there? A Roxanna discovers Gaskell hasn’t got rid of patient Julie Bloom’s embryonic stem cells, like he said he would, as ‘ethically’ they couldn’t be used. There’s definitely a chance Roxanna might get caught in the lab. In fact, it turns out Gaskell’s on his way down, so Roxanna has to make a quick getaway. Then, back on the ward, Roxanna makes a huge discovery about Laszlo Furz, the man Gaskell cured of motor
Q Having made these discoveries, does Roxanna confront Gaskell with what she knows? A Yes! Roxanna and Gaskell are old friends, so she doesn’t want to blow the whistle on him – she hopes they can work things out together. So Roxanna meets Gaskell in Albie’s bar, where she’s certain she’ll be able to have a reasonable conversation with him and that he’ll listen to her when she reveals her findings and urges him to stop the trial. Roxanna soon realises, however, that she’s not going to get through to Gaskell – that’s when she tells him she’s going to talk to his boss Henrik Hanssen.
Q We can’t imagine Gaskell likes that!
What happens then? A Gaskell chases after Roxanna and, as they argue, he threatens her. Outside, their argument gets very physical and I think, for the first time ever, Roxanna’s genuinely scared of him. She hasn’t seen this dark side of Gaskell before and she does everything she can to get away from him. But no one could have predicted what happens next…
Questionable ethics… Gaskell
Confrontation…Gaskell and Roxanna argue