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In Tribute to Ludwine Messiaen, PhD

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We mourn the passing of Ludwine Messiaen, a beloved member of our research community whose legacy of dedication and passion inspires us, and whose groundbreaking research reshaped the landscape of NF understanding and treatment. Our deepest condolences go out to her family, friends, and colleagues as we remember and honor her profound impact.

At the heart of scientific inquiry, there’s a place where dedication meets compassion, and where the pursuit of knowledge intertwines with the desire to alleviate suffering. It is in this space that we find ourselves reflecting on the life and legacy of Ludwine Messiaen, who played a pivotal role in advancing the study of NF.

Dr. Messiaen wasn’t just a scientist; she was a source of hope for the NF community. Through her pioneering work in genotype/phenotype studies, she unraveled the intricate connections between genetic makeup and observable traits, offering invaluable insights into the complexities of NF. Her lab was THE diagnostic epicenter of the NF community for decades. She was part of the diagnostic criteria steering committee (along with Eric Legius, Scott Plotkin, Gareth Evans, Pierre Wolkenstein, Sue Huson, and Patrice Pancza): the leaders who drove the rewriting of the new diagnostic criteria for NF1 and schwannomatosis. Her unwavering dedication to advancing knowledge and her commitment to excellence propelled the field forward, shaping the future of NF research and fostering a culture of rigorous inquiry.

We recognize the profound impact she had on the NF research community. She was more than a colleague; she was a mentor, a friend, and a guiding light for all who had the privilege of knowing her. In 2018, she was rightfully recognized with the Children’s Tumor Foundation’s Friedrich Von Recklinghausen award, the highest honor in NF research.  It was a testament to her remarkable achievements and a reminder of the gratitude we owe her, for she was not just a recipient of an award; she was a true champion for NF.

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Her legacy lives on in the countless lives she touched. She understood that behind every data point, behind every statistical analysis, there lies a human story—an NF story of struggle, of resilience, and of unwavering courage. And it was this understanding that fueled her passion.

In remembering Ludwine Messiaen, we not only celebrate the life of an extraordinary scientist but also of a true friend with the beautiful smile and the red glasses, who leaves behind a world of opportunity and hope for all those who are researching NF, and for those who are living with NF.


Click to read more about Dr. Messiaen’s work:

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