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In memory of pioneering FASD Researcher Dr Ann Streissguth

Dr Ann Streissguth

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Dr Ann Streisguth, a founding mother of FASD research.

Dr. Streissguth was an integral part of the US-based team in 1973 whose research resulted in the first paper to identify fetal alcohol syndrome.  This landmark paper, published in The Lancet, brought the issue of FASD into the public consciousness. 

Dr. Kenneth Lyons Jones, a lead author of that original paper, reflects that; “Ann’s legacy will include far more than her research accomplishments. Ann became a beacon in the night for children with FASD and she was a constant source of information and support for their families.” 

Three decades after that initial publication, she led the terminology summit that established in 2004 “fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD)” as the consensus umbrella term describing the range of effects that can occur as a result of Prenatal Alcohol Exposure (PAE).  

Dr. Streissguth dedicated her life to the FASD cause, publishing over a hundred scientific papers that expanded our understanding of the long-term consequences of alcohol use during pregnancy and the broader spectrum of FASD. 

She laid the foundation on which the FASD field continues to be built across the globe, a foundation through which her deep warmth and compassion for families living with FASD always shone through.   

Photo kindly supplied by Ben Streissguth