Sunday, 30 March 2014

Anna-Riitta Fuchs

Anna-Riitta Fuchs (1926-2014)
Anna-Riitta Fuchs was a reproductive endocrinologist whose great interest was the control of parturition. Much of her work centred on the posterior pituitary hormone oxytocin and its receptors in the myometrium.

I first met Anna-Riitta and her husband Fritz at their laboratory in Copenhagen shortly before they relocated to New York. I was a very green graduate student back then but was received with great warmth as they patiently explained their work on parturition in the rabbit. Those were heady times when a great debate was raging about the most important determinant of birth: was it oxytocin release or the withdrawal of progesterone from the placenta?

Anna-Riitta's many achievements include a D.Sc. from the University of Copenhagen and the Carl G. Hartman Award from the Society for the Study of Reproduction. Anna-Riitta was born 1926 in Helsinki and died last week in New York. A full obituary can be found here.


  1. Dear Mr. Carter, thanks for this nice post. I made a film about my Mom last year, and you can visit the film's microsite at Best regards, Lars Fuchs

  2. Hi Lars, Thank you for writing and for the link to the trailer. As you were born in Denmark, we probably have "met." Your parents invited me to their home and recall a garden with a swing. Quite possibly you were in it. I greatly admired your Mom and saw her occasionally at meetings. Your parents were good friends of my mentor Lars Philip Bengtsson. Best regards, Anthony