Much more complicated that I first thought, the discovery

The discovery of insulin is a fairly long story involving multiple parties – and for anyone looking for a cool script for a movie – an awesome story – filled with science, personality and plenty of action.

The main role players are : Banting, Best, Mcleod and Collip. Though there are actually quite a few more players involved.

It is a story of intrigue, personality clashes and a whole lot more.

Banting is the most associated name with the discovery of insulin and certainly there were multiple stages to the research, but many of the “breakthrough” ideas came from Banting. What is interesting (as often in life), the professor discounted Bantings ideas and even discouraged him. Luckily he perservered and if history is to be believed he was quite feisty.

There was a lengthy process involving dogs pancreas tissue and then fetal calf pancreas tissue and then a whole saga on purifying the “pancreas extract”. But the breakthrough came.

Life lessons that we can all take from this is to follow your conviction and continue to persevere even in the face of more experienced, “cleverer” people putting you down. And if it does not work out first time don’t ditch the idea.


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