Scientific Report on Insulin: Discovery and Mechanism of Action
Insulin is a hormone responsible for metabolism process and utilization of energy from different glucose nutrients. It is a useful and very important hormone because it enhances the treatment of diabetes. The discovery of the hormone was carried out by different individuals and before its discovery; diabetes was considered a deadly disease.
Some of the people who discovered the hormone include Paul Langerhans who found out that there were cluster of cells in pancreatic tissue responsible for producing various digestive tissues. The cell was later on discovered to be insulin producing beta cells (Nobelprize.org). Later on, the cells were named after the person who discovered them, islets of Langerhans.
Oskar Minkowski, a German physiologist and Joseph Von Mering also found out that a dog would suffer diabetes if the pancreas is removed from the animal. The two also discovered that if litigation of the duct, which is responsible for the flow of pancreatic juice to the intestine, occurs, the juices would not reach the intestine and the dog would end up developing digestive problems and not diabetes.
Banting, in October 1920 came up with an idea that pancreatic digestive juice could be dangerous to the secretion of the pan crease to be produced by the islets of Langerhans. He also aimed at carrying out litigation of to prevent the flow of nutrients to the pancreas. This is a process that would shrink the pancreas and lead to its degeneration causing a failure in the secretion of digestive juices.
In the summer of 1921, Banting decided to carry on with the experiment to learn more about diabetes. Best and Banting kicked off their experiments by removing pancreases from a dog. They discovered that there was an increase in blood sugar level and the animal became thirsty. It was forced to drink plenty of urinated and urinated a lot. The dog as a result became weak.
Therefore, it was clear that the animal had developed diabetes. They also did another experiment on a dog where Best and Banting litigated the pancreas and sliced up. It was then frozen in a mixture of salt and water. Before they were fully frozen, the pieces were grounded and frozen referring the substance to as isletin.
Mechanism of Insulin Action
Insulin is secreted by pancreatic islets. The hormone is released without delay as part of its action after a meal during which, the level of glucose in person’s blood steam also rises. Insulin carries out its functions by stimulating the special cells that produces it in the human body to absorb glucose from the blood stream. This is to ensure that sufficient and immediate energy is produced for storage of glycogen in the liver or muscle cells.
With sufficient insulin in the body, the muscles can consume glycogen for energy. Glycogen is vital in metabolism processes. Even so, they cannot be directly released in the blood stream. The uptake of amino acids and glucose is enhanced by the active receptor. The main purpose of the receptor is to increase the rate of glucose and amino acids uptake. Additionally, it catalyzes synthesis of proteins from triglyceride, amino acids and glycogen from glucose. The hormone prevents breakdown of gluconeogenesis in the triglycerides and in the liver in an adipose tissue.
Various insulin actions are also carried out by a series of intracellular signal substances (Medbio.info, 2). The fat brown cells found in the body however tend to be insulin sensitive and stimulate uptake of glucose into the cells and triglyceride synthesis. Glucose transportation is also undertaken by GLUT4, a major target in insulin organ in the body. Various protein kinase systems are also involved in determining how fat brown tissue responds to insulin. The role of insulin receptor substrate in the transmission of in brown fat tissue is summarized in the diagram below.
The use of insulin in treatment of diabetes
Diabetes mellitus a common disease that affects man hence, referred to an insulin deficiency disease. It is the main source of diseases in dogs and cats. The disease can also be grouped into two.
Type 1 or Insulin dependent Diabetes Mellitus
This type of diabetes is caused by insulin deficiency. It starts during childhood and because pancreatic beta cells are destroyed, it is more likely to lead to autoimmunity to more than one component of the cells. The effect of the disease can however be controlled through insulin replacement therapy. The therapy can be done by ensuring that there is close control of glucose levels in the blood by monitoring its concentrations, treatment using insulin and diet management.
These steps help to control long term impact of the disease on blood vessels, nerves and on other organisms.
Type II or non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus
This insulin category starts as a syndrome of insulin resistance where the targeted tissues are not in a position to respond as required to insulin. The disease starts at adulthood. The real cause of the disease has not been identified but the pathogenesis of the conditional is bitterly multifactorial. Obesity is the risk factor but in some cases, insulin level maybe normal even with extreme obesity in humans and animals.
There is also short acting insulin including aspart, glulisine and lispro used in the treatment of diabetes (Netdoctor 1). They react fast and are injected after meals. It starts to work after 15minutes of injection, peaks after an hour and lasts up to 5hrs. The insulin will last for a short period reducing the risk of low blood sugar level that occurs hours later after taking meals.
Short-acting insulin (neutral) Insulin
Short-acting insulin works after an hour of injection. It can last for 8hrs and some of human short acting insulin includes actrapid and Humilin R. The second type is bovine short acting insulin and is hypurin neutral found from the pancreases of cattle.
Medbio.info. Insulin’s Mechanism of Action, 2013. Web. 30 Sep. 2013. <http://www.medbio.info/horn/time%203 4/insulin%27s%20mechanism%20of%20action.htm>.
Netdoctor. Facts about Insulin treatment, 2013. Web. 30 Sep. 2013. <http://www.netdoctor.co.uk/health_advice/facts/diabetesinsulin.htm>.
Nobelprize.org. The discovery of insulin, 2013. Web. 30 Sep. 2013. <http://www.nobelprize.org/educational/medicine/insulin/discovery-insulin.html>.