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Article
November 1953

GLUCAGON, THE HYPERGLYCEMIC AGENT IN PANCREATIC EXTRACTS: A Possible Factor in Certain Types of Diabetes

Author Affiliations

PHILADELPHIA

From the Department of Physiology and Division of Endocrine and Cancer Research, Jefferson Medical College, and Department of Gastroenterology, Graduate School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania.

AMA Arch Intern Med. 1953;92(5):666-677. doi:10.1001/archinte.1953.00240230066007
Abstract

WITHIN the past 30 years tremendous strides have been made in our understanding of the pathways of intermediary metabolism and, more recently, in the study of the metabolic disturbances which may occur in disease. Despite the many studies which have been performed since the isolation of insulin, an understanding of the biochemical disturbances which occur in the diabetic patient is not forthcoming. The earlier concept, that this syndrome is produced by a simple insulin deficiency, has given way to the belief1 that in some instances various other factors may play a role. Among these may be glucagon, the hyperglycemicglycogenolytic factor.

Soon after Banting and Best2 extracted insulin from the pancreas, it became apparent that the crude preparations available contained an impurity which caused a rise in blood sugar level. Bürger and his co-workers3 and Collens, Murlin, and their associates4 studied this "contaminant," which they called glucagon. After Abel5 succeeded in

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