A History of Diabetes

1552 BC
Evers Papyrus first describes diabetes
400 BC 
Susutra describes symptoms of diabetes and classifies types of diabetes
10 AD
Celsus develops a clinical description of diabetes
20 AD
 Aretaeus coins the term diabetes and describes it as ‘ the melting of the flesh and limbs into urine’
164 AD
Greek physician Galen of Pergamum mistakenly diagnoses diabetes as an ailment of the kidneys
Up To 11th Century
Greek physician Galen of Pergamum mistakenly diagnoses diabetes as an ailment of the kidneys
16th Century
 Paracelsus identifies diabetes as a serious general disorder
Early 19th Century
First chemical tests developed to indicate and measure the presence of sugar in the urine
Late 1850’s
French physician, Priorry, advises diabetic patients to eat extra large quantities of sugar as treatment
Paul Langerhans, a German medical student, announces in a dissertation that the pancreas contains two systems of cells. One set secretes the normal pancreatic juice; the function of the other was unknown. Several years later, these cells were identified at the ‘islets of Langerhans’.
Oskar Minkowski and Joseph von Mering at the University of Strasbourg, Austria, first remove the pancreas from a dog to determine the effect of an absent pancreas on digest
October 31, 1920
Dr. Frederick Banting conceives the idea of insulin after reading Moses Barron’s ‘The Relation of the Islets of Langerhans to Diabetes with Special Reference to Cases of Pancreatic Lithiasis’ in the November issue of Surgery, Gynecology and Obstetrics.
Summer of 1921
Insulin is discovered. Banting and Best obtain and purify islets of Langerhans from an animal pancreas, inject the material (insulin) into a diabetic animal and find a fall in blood sugar level.
January 23, 1922
Dr. Collip tests insulin extracts on a 14 year-old boy named Leonard Thompson; the treatment was considered a success
May 30, 1922
Eli Lilly and Company and the University of Toronto enter a deal for the mass production of insulin in North America
October 25, 1923
Dr. Banting and his colleague Professor Macleod are awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine.
Two major types of diabetes are recognized; Type 1 (insulin dependent) and Type 2 (non-insulin dependent) diabetes.

To learn more about the history of diabetes visit the following: http://www.diabetes.ca/Section_About/timeline.asp