Toronto's Historical Plaques
2004 - Now in our 10th Year - 2014
The Discovery of Insulin
Photo by Alan L Brown - Posted May, 2010
Photo from Google Street View ©2013 Google - Posted November, 2013
On the outside wall of the Medical Sciences Building, here at 1 King's College Circle at the University of Toronto, are the English and French versions of this Ontario Heritage Trust plaque describing Banting and Best's momentous discovery. Here's what it says:
Plaque coordinates: 43.661298 -79.39368
In one of the most important advances in modern medicine, a team of investigators isolated and purified insulin in a building which stood on this site. On May 17, 1921, Frederick Banting, a young surgeon, and Charles Best, a recent graduate in physiology and biochemistry, began a series of experiments on pancreatic secretions in an attempt to find a treatment for "diabetes mellitus". Working under the general direction of J.J.R. Macleod, an expert in carbohydrate metabolism, they developed a promising anti-diabetic extract. James Collip, a noted biochemist, then increased the purity and potency of the substance. With the first successful clinical test of insulin on a human diabetic on January 23, 1922, Banting, Best, Macleod and Collip ensured prolonged lives for millions of diabetics throughout the world.
> Posted December 2, 2010
I was diabetic for more than 40 years. I owe my life to Banting and Best and their research.
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Alan L Brown