In November, 1920, while reading an article by Barron, on the relation of the islands of Langerhans to diabetes, F. G. Banting, then assistant in physiology of Western University, London, Ontario, conceived the idea of preparing an active extract of the islet tissue. Barron had called attention to the fact that degenerative changes occur in the acini of the pancreas following ligation of the ducts, and it occurred to Banting that therefore, after sufficient time had elapsed, the pancreas could be removed and the islet extract elaborated. It had been known that total removal of the pancreas in dogs results in severe and violent diabetes. However, attempts at feeding pancreatic tissue had been without beneficial results, and injections of various extracts of pancreatic tissue, although securing a reduction in sugar, had been followed by symptoms which did not warrant their use in the treatment of diabetes. In fact, a complete
THE STATUS OF INSULIN. JAMA. 1923;80(17):1238–1241. doi:10.1001/jama.1923.26430440004012
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