The Victoria times Colonist recently featured a story on Canadian scientist and thalidomide research pioneer Frances Kelsey for which Carleton medical historian Susanne Klausen was interviewed.

Considered by many to be among the most important scientists in Canadian history, the Vancouver-born Kelsey is credited with preventing the entry of thalidomide onto the US market in the 1960s. As Dr. Klausen explains, Kelsey’s courage in the face of pressure helped save thousands of children from the side-effects of the infamous drug.

Contergan Package

Sold under the trade name Contergan, thalidomide was used to alleviate morning sickness in pregnant women.

Carleton recently hosted a day-long session on thalidomide’s transnational history. PhD student Christine Chisolm, who studies the drug in Ghana, recently blogged about the event on