100 years ago, in 1921, Frederick Banting succeeded for the first time in isolating the hormone insulin from the pancreas of dogs. A few months later, a 13-year-old boy was injected with animal insulin for the first time. Since then, an effective therapy has been available that is constantly evolving and allows people with diabetes to live relatively normal lives today. Previously, the remaining lifespan of people with type 1 diabetes after diagnosis was a maximum of one to two years. The last few months were characterized by a severely carbohydrate-reduced diet, until the affected person then fell into an emaciated diabetic coma and died.
In the years following the first successful administration of insulin, great progress was made. The insulin used for therapy was initially obtained from purified and processed slaughterhouse waste from cattle or pigs. Nowadays, insulins are produced genetically with the help of bacteria or yeasts. They differ in their effectiveness, which makes individual therapy possible. After injections and pens, more and more patients are using pump therapy. Recent developments are moving toward an artificial pancreas, the so-called closed loop, in which an algorithm based on glucose values from continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) controls the pump's insulin delivery.
The "100 Years of Insulin" event will review the history as well as provide information on the current state of research and an outlook on future research goals. After the presence ceremony with around 100 guests, DZD researchers Prof. Annette Schürmann ("Targeted prevention and treatment of diabetes - the latest in diabetes research"), Prof. Martin Heni ("Preventing Alzheimer's and depression: insulin controls brain processes") and Prof. Andreas Pfeiffer ("Dietary recommendations for everyone, even with diabetes") will also speak at the online public event between 1 and 6 pm. In addition, the event will feature a 100 Years of Insulin digital trail, the "100 Years, Many Stories" campaign and a digital sponsor exhibition.
All talks will be in German language.