Tag Archives: Diabetes

Book Review of Insulin – The crooked timber

Arpan K. Banerjee Solihull, United Kingdom   Cover of Insulin – The Crooked Timber: A History from Thick Brown Muck to Wall Street Gold by Kersten T. Hall. The title of this interesting book is taken from the German philosopher Immanuel Kant, who wrote that: “Out of the crooked timber of humanity no straight thing […]

Maligning Macleod and “Bettering” Best: the discovery of insulin as depicted in film before Michael Bliss

James R. Wright Jr. Calgary, Alberta, Canada   JJR Macleod circa 1928. Credit: University of Toronto. Via Wikimedia. In 1921, Fred Banting and Charley Best, working under the supervision of JJR Macleod, made crude pancreatic extracts from duct-ligated dog, fetal bovine, or whole adult bovine pancreata and used these to treat diabetes in depancreatized dogs. […]

Did Ernest Hemingway have the Celtic curse?

Philip R. Liebson Chicago, Illinois, United States   Ernest Hemingway, Nobel Prize for Literature, 1954. GPA Photo Archive. Via Flickr. CC BY-NC 2.0 Considering Ernest Hemingway’s mishaps before he died in 1961 by a self-inflicted shotgun wound, it is surprising that he lived so long. He survived two plane crashes several days apart that left […]

The invisible manager

Javishkar Reddy Johannesburg, South Africa   Photo by meo from Pexels When I was twelve, I was hit on the head by a cricket ball. A few days later, I had my first seizure. Over the years, I have had many attacks, which have resulted in three chipped teeth, a cracked skull, a dislocated shoulder, […]

A look back at insulin

Shrestha Saraf Sutton Coldfield, United Kingdom Sanjay Saraf Sudarshan Ramachandran Birmingham, United Kingdom   Sir Frederick Banting and Dr. Charles Best co-discoverers of Insulin. Library and Archives Canada. Via Wikimedia. As we approach the centenary of the isolation, purification, and clinical use of insulin, it is an appropriate moment to reflect on the impact of […]

Early lessons

Howard Fischer Uppsala, Sweden   Virginia Emergency Room, image from “Historic VCU: A VCU Images Special Collection” VCU Libraries from Richmond, VA, USA, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons Finally, it was my first day in a US hospital after studying medicine in Europe for five and a half years. A medical education at the […]

Food as medicine

Keerthi Gondy Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States   Photo by PhotoMIX Ltd. from Pexels In my family, food is the language of love. A warm meal is the way we say “I love you.” Whenever I get sick, my mother prepares a pot of spicy turmeric soup and honey lemon tea. When my brother threw a game-winning strike […]

Johann Conrad Brunner and his work on the pancreas

In the history of medicine, the Swiss anatomist and physician Johann Conrad Brunner is more often remembered for discovering the glands in the duodenal mucosa than for his experiments on the pancreas. Though able to surgically induce at least transient diabetes mellitus in dogs, he failed to make a connection between the pancreas and diabetes, […]

The Beetham Eye Institute at the Joslin Diabetes Center

Annabelle S. Slingerland Boston, Massachusetts, United States   108 Bay State Road Spanning over three generations of leading ophthalmologists, the Beetham Eye Institute has contributed to major breakthroughs in diabetes eye care, from the first location of Dr. William P. Beetham’s ophthalmology practice at 108 Bay State Road in Boston to its current role as […]

Part I: The impact of insulin on children with diabetes at Toronto Sick Kids in the 1920s

Sarah Riedlinger Dean Giustini Brenden Hursh Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada   Introduction The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, 1929. Photo credit: Toronto Public Library, Accession # tspa_0113248f Diabetes mellitus (DM) is one of the most common chronic diseases in the world.1 In 2009 Canada alone had 2.35 million people with diabetes.2 Some 10% of sufferers […]