how was insulin currently created and historically?

3 Answers

  • Gary B
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    The first insulin was extracted by grinding up dog pancreases. The trouble is,, that insulin often caused allergic reactions! Many patients got sicker instead of getting better. It was quickly found that if the insulin was purified, the allergies went away,

    A MUCH better (and more plentiful) source of insulin was pig and cow pancreases. These were EASILY available from slaughter house. Eli Lilly (Indianapolis, IN) was the first company to manufacturer NATURAL insulin, using pig and cow pancreases. In fact, the Indianapolis Headquarters of Eli Lilly are now built on the site of the old Indianapolis Stock Yards!

    Still, the supplies of dead cows and pigs was not enough. It was eventually discovered that the DNA in yeast and E.Coli bacteria could be modified to produce insulin instead of alcohol (yeast) or toxins (E.Coli). This is called Recombinant DNA (rDNA) technology. 95% of the worlds insulin is now made with rDNA technology. Most insulin manufactures have completely dropped "natural insulin", and what little bit is still made from pigs and cows is used almost entirely in veterinarian cases.

    insulin is destroyed by stomach acids, so insulin canNOT be take orally. There are NO "insulin pills" -- ONLY injections.

    Recently, ALL insulin manufacturers tried developing "inhaled insulin", taken through the nose and lungs. But this caused several cases of lung cancer, and this project was stopped.

  • 5 years ago


    Source(s): I Cured My Diabetes -
  • 1 decade ago

    Have you ever wondered what happened to diabetics before the creation of insulin injections? Most Type 1 diabetics before the year 1922 had to starve themselves in order to survive for any length of time. They had to follow an extremely strict diet with very limited intake on most foods, and many foods, they were not able to consume at all. Some diabetics lived for awhile, others did not survive for very long.

    Knowledge about insulin is a relatively new thing. It was a Berlin medical student, Paul Langerhans, who first discovered insulin in 1869. It was when Langerhans used a microscope , and noticed a heap of cells in the pancreas which then became known as the Islets of Langerhans. From this point later on. scientists figured out that these cells produce insulin, which in turn regulates carbohydrate metabolism. Back in January of the year 1922, Leonard Thompson, a 14-year-old diabetic,received the first injection of insulin ever. And because the extract was impure at this time, Thompson experienced a severe allergic reaction. And due to this happening, doctors cancelled future insulin injections for Thompson. In later years though, researchers were able to perfect insulin injections. This became the standard way of treating diabetes. The concentration of insulin you inject can affect the entire body. And that explains why a diabetic person can suffer a multitude of side effects, which include blindness and slow healing wounds. People who suffer from Type 1 diabetes require insulin every day in order to keep living. Type 2 diabetics may require insulin if other diabetes pills and dietary changes are not effective enough in controlling glucose.

    Right at this point and time, it is not possible to take insulin by mouth. Instead, insulin is administered through syringes with needles or insulin pens. There are some problems that are associated with insulin in treatment of diabetes. It can be difficult to determine the right dose, which often must be adjusted to meet the needs of the person. If the person taking insulin makes an accidental mistake with their dosage, it can be very dangerous.

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