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Who Developed Insulin

Scientists Develop

Scientists Develop "smart" Insulin That Automatically Activates When Needed

Living with type 1 diabetes can be challenging, to say the least. Sufferers have the arduous task of attempting to maintain their blood sugar levels daily with insulin injections and fingerprick tests, which often amounts to guesswork. But scientists around the world are endeavoring to develop new ways to manage the condition, such as non-invasive skin patches that constantly monitor glucose levels for you. And now, approaching the problem from a different angle, researchers may have come up with another way to eliminate the need to regularly check blood sugar throughout the day with the development of a “smart insulin” that automatically activates when glucose levels are too high. The new compound, which appears to be effective in mice, also sticks around in the blood for up to 24 hours, raising the possibility that in the future, patients would only need a daily injection. Type 1 diabetes is a condition that arises from the body’s self-destruction of insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. The job of insulin is to stimulate our tissues to mop up excess glucose from the blood, so in its absence, blood sugar levels can become dangerously high. That’s why diabetes patients monitor their carbohydrate intake and glucose levels and repeatedly inject insulin based on these numbers. Long-acting insulin, which lasts for around 24 hours, can also be used, but with both short- and long-acting forms patients can end up with too much in their blood, which leads to potentially fatal low blood glucose, or hypoglycemia. Patients can also not inject enough into their blood, which results in high blood glucose, or hyperglycemia. As pointed out by The Guardian, if this occurs regularly, serious long-term complications can ensue, such as blindness and nerve damage. The idea behi Continue reading >>

Insulin: Discovery And Controversy.

Insulin: Discovery And Controversy.

Abstract During the first two decades of the 20th century, several investigators prepared extracts of pancreas that were often successful in lowering blood sugar and reducing glycosuria in test animals. However, they were unable to remove impurities, and toxic reactions prevented its use in humans with diabetes. In the spring of 1921, Frederick G. Banting, a young Ontario orthopedic surgeon, was given laboratory space by J.J.R. Macleod, the head of physiology at the University of Toronto, to investigate the function of the pancreatic islets. A student assistant, Charles Best, and an allotment of dogs were provided to test Banting's hypothesis that ligation of the pancreatic ducts before extraction of the pancreas, destroys the enzyme-secreting parts, whereas the islets of Langerhans, which were believed to produce an internal secretion regulating sugar metabolism, remained intact. He believed that earlier failures were attributable to the destructive action of trypsin. The name "insuline" had been introduced in 1909 for this hypothetic substance. Their experiments produced an extract of pancreas that reduced the hyperglycemia and glycosuria in dogs made diabetic by the removal of their pancreases. They next developed a procedure for extraction from the entire pancreas without the need for duct ligation. This extract, now made from whole beef pancreas, was successful for treating humans with diabetes. Facilitating their success was a development in clinical chemistry that allowed blood sugar to be frequently and accurately determined in small volumes of blood. Success with purification was largely the work of J.B. Collip. Yield and standardization were improved by cooperation with Eli Lilly and Company. When the Nobel Prize was awarded to Banting and Macleod for the disc Continue reading >>

Who Really Discovered Insulin?

Who Really Discovered Insulin?

For people with diabetes mellitus, the year 1921 is a meaningful one. That was the year Canadian physician Frederick Banting and medical student Charles H. Best discovered the hormone insulin in pancreatic extracts of dogs. On July 30, 1921, they injected the hormone into a diabetic dog and found that it effectively lowered the dog’s blood glucose levels to normal. By the end of that year, with the help of Canadian chemist James B. Collip and Scottish physiologist J.J.R. Macleod, Banting and Best purified insulin, and the next year it was used to successfully treat a boy suffering from severe diabetes. The researchers were celebrated and honored for their breakthrough. Banting and MacLeod even shared the 1923 Nobel Prize for Physiology and Medicine for their work. Indeed, they were the “discoverers” of insulin. But the story of the discovery of insulin actually begins much earlier than 1921. According to Britannica’s pharmaceutical industry article: In 1869 Paul Langerhans, a medical student in Germany, was studying the histology of the pancreas. He noted that this organ has two distinct types of cells—acinar cells, now known to secrete digestive enzymes, and islet cells (now called islets of Langerhans). The function of islet cells was suggested in 1889 when German physiologist and pathologist Oskar Minkowski and German physician Joseph von Mering showed that removing the pancreas from a dog caused the animal to exhibit a disorder quite similar to human diabetes mellitus (elevated blood glucose and metabolic changes). After this discovery, a number of scientists in various parts of the world attempted to extract the active substance from the pancreas so that it could be used to treat diabetes. One of those scientists was Romanian physiologist Nicolas C. Paule Continue reading >>

History Of Insulin

History Of Insulin

Dr Frederick Banting and medical student Charles Best perform experiments on the pancreases of dogs in Toronto, Canada. Professor John Macleod provides Banting and Best with a laboratory to carry out the experiments. When the pancreases are removed the dogs showed symptoms of diabetes. The pancreas was then sliced and ground up into an injectable extract. This is injected a few times a day which helped the dogs to regain health. Given the early success, Macleod wants to see more evidence that the procedure worked and provides pancreases from cows to make the extract which is named ‘insulin’. Bertram Collip, a biochemist, joins the research team to provide help with purifying the insulin to be used for testing on humans. Banting and Best clearly had confidence in the insulin as they were the first humans to test the insulin by injecting themselves with it which caused them to experience weakness and dizziness, signs of hypoglycemia. After the group had experimented enough to gain an understanding of the required doses and how best to treat hypoglycemia, their insulin is deemed ready to be tried on patients. Tweet Type 2 diabetes mellitus is a metabolic disorder that results in hyperglycemia (high blood glucose levels) due to the body: Being ineffective at using the insulin it has produced; also known as insulin resistance and/or Being unable to produce enough insulin Type 2 diabetes is characterised by the body being unable to metabolise glucose (a simple sugar). This leads to high levels of blood glucose which over time may damage the organs of the body. From this, it can be understood that for someone with diabetes something that is food for ordinary people can become a sort of metabolic poison. This is why people with diabetes are advised to avoid sources of dieta Continue reading >>

The History Of A Wonderful Thing We Call Insulin

The History Of A Wonderful Thing We Call Insulin

Since the dawn of time, we have searched for ways to make life easier for us. The modern age has given us some amazing technological advances—what we would do without the internet, our iPhones or high-speed travel? For many people, surviving life without these things sounds rough. However, if you have diabetes, no doubt you’re also a big fan of one particular 20th-century discovery: insulin. Before insulin was discovered in 1921, people with diabetes didn’t live for long; there wasn’t much doctors could do for them. The most effective treatment was to put patients with diabetes on very strict diets with minimal carbohydrate intake. This could buy patients a few extra years but couldn’t save them. Harsh diets (some prescribed as little as 450 calories a day!) sometimes even caused patients to die of starvation. So how did this wonderful breakthrough blossom? Let’s travel back a little more than 100 years ago.… In 1889, two German researchers, Oskar Minkowski and Joseph von Mering, found that when the pancreas gland was removed from dogs, the animals developed symptoms of diabetes and died soon afterward. This led to the idea that the pancreas was the site where “pancreatic substances” (insulin) were produced. Later experimenters narrowed this search to the islets of Langerhans (a fancy name for clusters of specialized cells in the pancreas). In 1910, Sir Edward Albert Sharpey-Shafer suggested only one chemical was missing from the pancreas in people with diabetes. He decided to call this chemical insulin, which comes for the Latin word insula, meaning “island.” So what happened next? Something truly miraculous. In 1921, a young surgeon named Frederick Banting and his assistant Charles Best figured out how to remove insulin from a dog’s pancreas. S Continue reading >>

About Insulin & Diabetes

About Insulin & Diabetes

Dr Fred Banting and Professor John Macleod were given the Nobel Prize in 1923 for the discovery. Behind their triumph lies a story of rivalry and ambition, of near-failure and wrecked lives: the tortuous path which eventually led Banting and Macleod, along with chemist Bert Collip and medical student Charles Best to uncover the treatment for diabetes at a Toronto hospital two years earlier. Of insulin and diabetes The magical qualities of insulin, the hormone whose absence causes Type I diabetes, pervade this drama and make this story as vital today as it was a century ago. The causes of and triggers for Type I are still not fully understood, and its incidence in children and young people continues to increase. Insulin is the only treatment. It also remains the only common medicine that requires patients to overcome their primal self-defensive instincts and inject it into themselves. Everyone who sees this film will know a diabetic: a friend or relative who uses insulin every day of their lives. But few know the story of its discovery. Back in the early 1920s, diabetes was a death sentence for all who developed it. It killed more Americans in 1914-18 than died in the First World War. One hundred years on, the production of insulin has been refined, but it is still expensive and exclusive. Eight percent of the UK’s NHS budget is spent on diabetes (Types I and II). For comparison, all cancer treatments in Britain absorb only four percent. Those diabetics unfortunate enough to be born in less developed or war-torn countries will still die. And diabetes, according to the World Health Organization, remains the biggest single health threat to the world today. In the UK, it is the leading cause of blindness and renal failure in patients of working age. Unspeakably Wonderful Continue reading >>

Blood Sugar And Diabetes Are They Tightly Related?

Blood Sugar And Diabetes Are They Tightly Related?

Yes, an interesting report. So if unstable blood sugars are not causing the problems what is? There are more and more people who believe the problem is hyperinsulinemia or high blood insulin. Insulin is a rather busy little hormone. Most of us know it helps to control blood sugar levels, but it has many other functions. Modify the activity of enzymes and the resulting reactions in the body. Build muscle following sickness or injury via the transportation of amino acids to the muscle tissue, which is required to repair muscular damage and increase size and strength. It helps to regulate the uptake of amino acids, DNA replication and the synthesis of proteins. Manage synthesis of lipids by uptake into fat cells, which are converted to triglycerides. Manage breakdown or protein and lipids due to changes in fat cells. Uptake of amino acids and potassium into the cells that cannot take place in the absence of insulin. Manage excretion of sodium and fluid volume in the urine. Enhance learning and memory of the brain functions. So it plays all these important roles within the body but orthodox medicine always resorts to insulin or drugs that affect insulin to stabilise blood sugars. No wonder T2D’s end up with so many long term health problems. And no wonder people are starting to realise this and using low carb solutions to control their insulin levels. So, which is the correct treatment? Controlling blood sugar levels with insulin OR Controlling insulin levels with blood sugar? Getting it wrong has dire consequences. Continue reading >>

Insulin Resistance Contributes More To The Increased Risk For Diabetes Development In Subjects With Low Lipoprotein(a) Level Than Insulin Secretion

Insulin Resistance Contributes More To The Increased Risk For Diabetes Development In Subjects With Low Lipoprotein(a) Level Than Insulin Secretion

Abstract Recent studies suggest an association between Lipoprotein(a) [Lp(a)] and the development of diabetes mellitus. We analyzed the association between baseline Lp(a) levels and diabetes development after 4 years of follow-up, in a population of apparently healthy Korean subjects. A total of 2,536 non-diabetic participants (mean age: 41 years, men: 92%) of a health checkup program were included in the study. Diabetes development was defined by fasting blood glucose ≥126 mg/dL, HbA1c ≥6.5%, and self-reported treatment of diabetes. Homeostasis model assessment (HOMA) indices were used to assess insulin resistance (IR) and insulin secretion (IS). Presence of IR and impaired IS was defined by being in the highest quartile of HOMA-IR and in the lowest quartile HOMA-IS. After four years, 3.4% of the participants developed diabetes. The odds ratio (OR) of developing diabetes was lowest in the 4th quartile group of baseline Lp(a) (0.323 [95% CI 0.153–0.685])with the 1st quartile group as the reference. The subjects with both IR & impaired IS plus baseline Lp(a)<50 mg/dL showed the higher OR for diabetes development compared with those without IR and normal IS as the reference (67.277 [20.218–223.871], and those with IR plus Lp(a)<50 mg/dL showed higher OR for diabetes than in those with impaired IS and Lp(a)<50 mg/dL (3.811 [1.938–7.495] vs. 3.452 [1.620–7.353]). The subjects with low baseline Lp(a) level showed higher risk for development of diabetes compared with high baseline Lp(a) level, and this was prominent in those with IR than in those with impaired IS. Continue reading >>

The History Of Insulin

The History Of Insulin

Since insulin was discovered in 1921, it has become one of the most thoroughly studied molecules in scientific history. Diabetes has been recognized as a distinct medical condition for at least 3,500 years, but its cause was a mystery until early this century. In the early 1920s, researchers strongly suspected that diabetes was caused by a malfunction in the digestive system related to the pancreas gland, a small organ that sits on top of the liver. At that time, the only way to "control" diabetes was through a diet low in carbohydrate and sugar, and high in fat and protein. Instead of dying shortly after diagnosis, this diet allowed diabetics to live - but only for about a year. Exactly what was wrong, or missing, in the sugar metabolism pathway of people with diabetes was unknown until a group of Canadian researchers purified insulin in 1921 and proved that diabetes is a disease of insulin deficiency. As with most major scientific discoveries, the groundwork for the discovery of insulin, had been laid by several others before the Canadian researchers isolated it. In 1889, two European researchers, Minkowski and von Mering, found that when the pancreas gland was removed from dogs, they developed all the symptoms of diabetes and died soon afterwards. Minkowski and von Mering proposed that the pancreas was crucial for sugar metabolism. Later experimenters narrowed the search to the Islets of Langerhans-clusters of specialized cells within the pancreas. In 1910, Sharpey-Shafer of Edinburgh suggested a single chemical was missing from the pancreas in diabetic people. He proposed calling this chemical "insulin," and later the successful Canadian researchers took him up on the suggestion. Meanwhile, an American scientist E. L. Scott was partially successful in extracting ins Continue reading >>

The True Inventor Of Insulin – Nicolae Paulescu

The True Inventor Of Insulin – Nicolae Paulescu

Without the work of Nicolae Paulescu the history of medicine would probably have a different course, particularly the history of diabetic medicine. The distinguished Romanian scientist was the first to discover insulin (which he called pancreine). In 1916 Paulescu developed an aqueous pancreatic extract which normalized the blood sugar levels in a diabetic dog. He had to interrupt his experiments during the World War I till 1921 when he wrote an extensive whitepaper on the effect of the pancreatic extract injected into a diabetic animal: Research on the Role of the Pancreas in Food Assimilation. The paper was published in August 1921 in the Archives Internationales de Physiologie. His discovery was patented on April 10, 1922 by the Romanian Ministry of Industry and Trade – patent no. 6254. And the Nobel Prize Goes to… In 1923 two other scientists were to be recognized as the creators of insulin: doctor Frederick Grant Banting and biochemist John James Richard Macleod. Curiously enough, in 1921 Banting started performing the experiments that led to the “discovery of insulin” on dogs, inspired by the early works of Polish-German physician Oscar Minkowski who in 1889 removed the pancreas from a healthy dog to test its assumed role in digestion. If you go back at the beginning of the article you will note that Paulescu was successfully performing the same type of experiments in 1916. By the time Banting isolated insulin, Paulescu already held a patent for its discovery. Moreover, Banting was familiar with Paulescu’s work. He even uses Paulescu’s “Research on the Role of the Pancreas in Food Assimilation” as reference in the paper that brought him the Nobel, although he misquotes: He states that injections into peripheral veins produce no effect and his exper Continue reading >>

Fetuses Of Obese Mothers Develop Insulin Resistance In Utero

Fetuses Of Obese Mothers Develop Insulin Resistance In Utero

Abstract OBJECTIVE Offspring of obese mothers have an increased risk for obesity and diabetes. The purpose of this study was to determine whether fetuses of obese women have increased obesity, insulin resistance, and markers of inflammation, supporting the concept of fetal programming. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS Fifty-three lean and 68 obese women with singleton term pregnancies were evaluated at elective cesarean delivery. Maternal and umbilical cord blood was obtained for measures of insulin resistance and cytokines. Neonatal body composition was estimated using anthropometric measurements within 24 h of delivery. RESULTS The fetuses of obese mothers had greater percent body fat (13.1 ± 3.4 vs. 11.6 ± 2.9%, P = 0.02), homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (1.51 ± 0.86 vs. 1.06 ± 0.70, P = 0.003), cord leptin (14.5 ± 13.5 vs. 8.2 ± 4.7 ng/ml, P = 0.001), and interleukin-6 (3.5 ± 2.3 vs. 2.4 ± 1.4 pg/ml, P = 0.02) than fetuses of lean women. There was a strong positive correlation between fetal adiposity and insulin resistance (r = 0.32, P = 0.0008) as well as maternal pregravid BMI and fetal insulin resistance (r = 0.31, P = 0.007) even with adjustment for potential confounders. Cord leptin had a significant correlation with fetal insulin resistance (r = 0.30, P = 0.001), but there was no significant correlation between any other umbilical cord cytokines and fetal insulin resistance. CONCLUSIONS These data suggest that maternal obesity creates a significant risk for the next generations with metabolic compromise already apparent at birth. Therefore, if prevention of obesity is the goal rather than treatment, the perinatal period may be an important focus of future research. The significant increases in adult obesity and type 2 diabetes are clearly Continue reading >>

History Of Insulin

History Of Insulin

Go to: Insulin The discovery of insulin in 1922 marked a major breakthrough in medicine and therapy in patients with diabetes. Long before the discovery of insulin, it was hypothesized that the pancreas secreted a substance that controlled carbohydrate metabolism (5). For years, attempts at preparing pancreatic extracts to lower blood glucose were unsuccessful due to impurities and toxicities (6). Frederick Banting, an orthopedic surgeon, had the idea of isolating pancreatic islet extracts by ligating the pancreatic duct of dogs, keeping them alive until the acini degenerated, leaving the islets for isolation. He approached John Macleod, professor of physiology and department head at the University of Toronto, for laboratory space. Macleod granted him laboratory space, ten dogs for his experiments, a student research assistant (Charles Best), and provided supervision and guidance. The experiments began on May 17, 1921, and by September they showed that the depancreatized dog developed diabetes and that intravenous injection with their pancreatic extract, which they named isletin, lowered the blood glucose. By late 1921, the biochemist J.B. Collip joined the group and helped purify the isletin for human use. The first injection of the pancreatic extract to a 14-year-old boy by Banting and Best on January 11, 1922, caused a sterile abscess, had no effect on ketosis, and resulted in mild blood glucose reduction. Subsequent injections of the purified extract by Collip had promising results that same year. Blood glucose and glucosuria decreased, and ketonuria disappeared. Rosenfeld reported encouraging results in six more patients (6). Several months later, in 1923, Banting, Best, and Macleod were awarded the Nobel Prize. Eli Lilly began producing insulin from animal pancrea Continue reading >>

Insulin: Discovery And Controversy

Insulin: Discovery And Controversy

During the first two decades of the 20th century, several investigators prepared extracts of pancreas that were often successful in lowering blood sugar and reducing glycosuria in test animals. However, they were unable to remove impurities, and toxic reactions prevented its use in humans with diabetes. In the spring of 1921, Frederick G. Banting, a young Ontario orthopedic surgeon, was given laboratory space by J.J.R. Macleod, the head of physiology at the University of Toronto, to investigate the function of the pancreatic islets. A student assistant, Charles Best, and an allotment of dogs were provided to test Banting’s hypothesis that ligation of the pancreatic ducts before extraction of the pancreas, destroys the enzyme-secreting parts, whereas the islets of Langerhans, which were believed to produce an internal secretion regulating sugar metabolism, remained intact. He believed that earlier failures were attributable to the destructive action of trypsin. The name “insuline” had been introduced in 1909 for this hypothetic substance. Their experiments produced an extract of pancreas that reduced the hyperglycemia and glycosuria in dogs made diabetic by the removal of their pancreases. They next developed a procedure for extraction from the entire pancreas without the need for duct ligation. This extract, now made from whole beef pancreas, was successful for treating humans with diabetes. Facilitating their success was a development in clinical chemistry that allowed blood sugar to be frequently and accurately determined in small volumes of blood. Success with purification was largely the work of J.B. Collip. Yield and standardization were improved by cooperation with Eli Lilly and Company. When the Nobel Prize was awarded to Banting and Macleod for the discove Continue reading >>

Insulin: Its History And Future

Insulin: Its History And Future

Learn about the invention of the life-saving drug insulin, and what the future holds in store. We all know that without insulin, those of us with type 1 diabetes would slowly starve to death. Our bodies don't make insulin, so we can't process the food we eat properly and get energy and nutrients from it. In this article, I'll talk about the development of insulin, as well as how insulin is used right now in diabetes treatment. At the end, I'll talk a little about the future of insulin and type 1 diabetes. History of Insulin and Diabetes Before insulin became available, children routinely were fed a cup of cooking oil a day because that was thought to help them process food. The results were as you imagine. The archives of Joslin Diabetes Center, where Elliott P. Joslin, MD, was one of the first Americans to use insulin, are replete with before and after pictures of children who looked at death’s door one month, and months later appeared to be healthy normal children. Insulin was greeted as a cure for diabetes; however, today we know that it can only control the disease, and with extended life comes a long list of long-term complications. Diabetes was first described and named by Aratacus of Cappadocia in Asia Minor in the first century AD. The name came from the analogy that diabetics' urine was like water coming through a siphon. The sweet smell of the urine of diabetics was first noted in the 17th century by the Oxford physician, Thomas Willis, but ancient Indians in the 4th century are said to have noted ants congregating at the urine of diabetics. Attempts at treatment began when no more was known about diabetes than the polyuria. John Rollo, Surgeon-General to the Royal Artillery treated a patient by dietary restriction in 1706. The great figure in the story of d Continue reading >>

The Discovery Of Insulin

The Discovery Of Insulin

Before the discovery of insulin, diabetes was a feared disease that most certainly led to death. Doctors knew that sugar worsened the condition of diabetic patients and that the most effective treatment was to put the patients on very strict diets where sugar intake was kept to a minimum. At best, this treatment could buy patients a few extra years, but it never saved them. In some cases, the harsh diets even caused patients to die of starvation. During the nineteenth century, observations of patients who died of diabetes often showed that the pancreas was damaged. In 1869, a German medical student, Paul Langerhans, found that within the pancreatic tissue that produces digestive juices there were clusters of cells whose function was unknown. Some of these cells were eventually shown to be the insulin-producing beta cells. Later, in honor of the person who discovered them, the cell clusters were named the islets of Langerhans. In 1889 in Germany, physiologist Oskar Minkowski and physician Joseph von Mering, showed that if the pancreas was removed from a dog, the animal got diabetes. But if the duct through which the pancreatic juices flow to the intestine was ligated - surgically tied off so the juices couldn't reach the intestine - the dog developed minor digestive problems but no diabetes. So it seemed that the pancreas must have at least two functions: To produce digestive juices To produce a substance that regulates the sugar glucose This hypothetical internal secretion was the key. If a substance could actually be isolated, the mystery of diabetes would be solved. Progress, however, was slow. Banting's Idea In October 1920 in Toronto, Canada, Dr. Frederick Banting, an unknown surgeon with a bachelor's degree in medicine, had the idea that the pancreatic digestive ju Continue reading >>

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