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Old 11-25-2008, 05:07 PM
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Thumbs up 1-2-3 Home Made Insulin



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In an effort to put this information in one place for discussion I have compiled my research across the web for this post. I will be putting links to credits as needed.

I have not tried this, so please use this as information only as a just in case.

One thing all diabetics face in a SHTF scenario is the eventual lack of meds or maybe the inability to get them, while some will be able to cope via herbal remedies, diet and exersize, some heavily insulin dependent diabetics will be looking as a very gruesome ride.

I am a type 1 diabetic diagnosed at 26, mostly weight and inactivity related (was probably type 2 for a bit) I now rely on insulin (lantis) and (humalog) to maintain a good state of health. While exercise and diet have played a large role in reducing my needs, during sickness and stress sometimes uncontrollable things can happen to your blood sugar.

As you can guess once I became more survival minded (5days in the ICU tends to do that) I saw a need to know that it was at least possible to manufacture on some scale insulin.

Here is what I have found out so far.

***************************************

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eva_Saxl

This is a link to an old story that I first heard on another forum about a person during world war 2 that manufactured and distrubted insulin using 1920's tech to keep alive a great deal of diabetics during the war.

This was my first sign of hope should I ever or anyone ever need to attempt to make it themselves, they were after all in occupied China. Given the lack of quality of the blackmarket insulin at the time and price 1 gold ounce bar would get you a small supply, but one of her friends had died from this which inspired her husband and herself to learn how to make it.

They managed to collect a book, "Beckman's Internal Medicine" described the methods that Dr. Frederick Banting and Charles Best first used to extract insulin from the pancreases of dogs, calves, and cows in 1921.

From here you can guess that after great trouble they began to successfully produce useable insulin for humans that sustained what is rumored to be more than 2-3000 diabetics.

******

So it can be done, the part of all this that will be dangerous and hard is the testing of the strength of the insulin. Any diabetic can tell you what happens with to much insulin.

*******

I found this information @ http://medtech.syrene.net/forum/showthread.php?t=3442 by using google

*******

http://www.discoveryofinsulin.com/Experiments.htm

At the end of July, Banting operated on one of the duct tied dogs and found that the ligature had held and that the pancreas had shrunk to about one-third of of its normal size. The gland was removed, chopped up and ground in a mortar with saline, strained and a small amount injected into a vein of a depancreatized or diabetic dog. This animal was observed very carefully and with anxiety, for there was great concern that it may have toxic effects as earlier experimenters had discovered. For a while there seemed to be no change, then later to dog showed improvement. The animal became a much more active and more important the blood sugar levels were significantly reduced demonstrating the soundness of Banting's theory.

Although they were jubilant over the result of this experiment, there was some fear that it may have been as spurious result of no real significance. Consequently they injected the substance into other diabetic dogs with the same dramatic result and now felt confident that they had isolated the anti-diabetic factor from the islets of Langerhans in the pancreas. Banting's theory had been proven, but still diabetes had not been conquered even though the groundwork had been laid and there were still problems to overcome. On Dr. MacLeodís return from Europe he was impressed, but insisted that the whole procedure be repeated to confirm this truly admirable result. The results, of course, with further experiments were confirmed. MacLeod was convinced and the announcement of discovery was presented in papers through the Physiological Journal Club in Toronto on November 14th , and the American Physiological Society shortly before the end of year in 1921. Many publications followed.

[...]

In the fall of 1922 the extract was still impure and they were experiencing considerable difficulty with deterioration, sensitization, reaction, etc., although Collip had prepared an extract which could be injected into humans and was a great improvement in the purification of the product. Collip also working with rabbits discovered the dangerous effects of too much insulin producing hypoglycemia and the basis for him believe biological assay of insulin. There were still, however, problems to be overcome come the main one of which production of the product in large enough quantities to be useful clinically. Consequently, the third stage of the development of insulin was being approached and methods were found to extract insulin from the adult beef pancreas, for the supply from the tilt calves was certainly much too small and with further work, without going into details which are contained in Stevenson's book on Sir Frederick Banting, it was possible to produce insulin from the adult beef pancreas.


And from Frederick Banting's Nobel Lecture in 1925:

http://www.discoveryofinsulin.com/FGBLecture.htm

Best and Scott who are responsible for the preparation of Insulin in the Insulin Division of the Connaught Laboratories have tested all the available methods and have appropriated certain details from many of these, several new procedures have been found advantageous have been introduced by them. The yield of Insulin obtained by Best and Scott at the Connaught Laboratories, by a preliminary extraction with dilute sulphuric acid followed by alcohol is 1,800 to 2,220 units per kg. of pancreas.



The present method of preparation is as follows. The beef or pork pancreas is finely minced in a larger grinder and the minced material is then treated with 5 c.c. of concentrated sulphuric acid, appropriately diluted, per pound of glands. The mixture is stirred for a period of three or four hours and 95% alcohol is added until the concentration of alcohol is 60% to 70%. Two extractions of the glands are made. The solid material is then partially removed by centrifuging the mixture and the solution is further clarified by filtering through paper. The filtrate is practically neutralized with NaOH. The clear filtrate is concentrated in vacuo to about 1/15 of its original volume. The concentrate is then heated to 50oC which results in the separation of lipoid and other materials, which are removed by filtration. Ammonium sulphate (37 grams. per 100 c.c.) is then added to the concentrate and a protein material containing all the Insulin floats to the top of the liquid. The precipitate is skimmed off and dissolved in hot acid alcohol. When the precipitate has completely dissolved, 10 volumes of warm alcohol are added. The solution is then neutralized with NaOH and cooled to room temperature, and kept in a refrigerator at 5oC for two days. At the end of this time the dark coloured supernatant alcohol is decanted off. The alcohol contains practically no potency. The precipitate is dried in vacuo to remove all trace of the alcohol. It is then dissolved in acid water, in which it is readily soluble. The solution is made alkaline with NaOH to PH 7.3 to 7.5. At this alkalinity a dark coloured precipitate settles out, and is immediately centrifuged off. This precipitate is washed once or twice with alkaline water of PH 9.0 and the washings are added to the main liquid. It is important that this process be carried out fairly quickly as Insulin is destroyed in alkaline solution. The acidity is adjusted to PH 5.0 and a white precipitate readily settles out. Tricresol is added to a concentration of 0.3% in order to assist in the isoelectric precipitation and to act as a preservative. After standing one week in the ice chest the supernatant liquid is decanted off and the resultant liquid is removed by centrifuging. The precipitate is then dissolved in a small quantity of acid water. A second isoelectric precipitation is carried out by adjusting the acidity to a PH of approximately 5.0. After standing over night the resultant precipitate is removed by centrifuging. The precipitate, which contains the active principle in a comparatively pure form, is dissolved in acid water and the hydrogen ion concentration adjusted to PH 2.5. The material is carefully tested to determine the potency and is then diluted to the desired strength of 10, 20, 40 or 80 units per c.c. Tricresol is added to secure a concentration of 0.1 percent. Sufficient sodium chloride is added to make the solution isotonic. The Insulin solution is passed through a Mandler filter. After passing through the filter the Insulin is retested carefully to determine its potency. There is practically no loss in berkefelding. The tested Insulin is poured into sterile glass vials with aseptic precautions and the sterility of the final product thoroughly tested by approved methods.



The method of estimating the potency of Insulin solutions is based on the effect that Insulin produces upon the blood sugar of normal animals. Rabbits serve as the test animal. They are starved for twenty four hours before the administration of Insulin. Their weight should be approximately 2 kg. Insulin is distributed in strengths of 10, 20, 40 and 80 units per c.c. The unit is one third of the amount of material required to lower the blood sugar of a 2 kg. rabbit which has fasted twenty four hours from the normal level (0.118 percent) to 0.045 percent over a period of five hours. In a moderately severe case of diabetes one unit causes about 2.5 grammes of carbohydrate to be utilized. In earlier and milder cases, as a rule, one unit has a greater effect, accounting for three to five grammes of carbohydrate.

******************

My motivation for posting this was a request in another thread especially since as far as I can tell from searching that it has not been written about on this site as of yet.

I hope that I have properly linked to the sources and I hope this provides some hope for those survivalist diabetics out there.

To be honest though this stuff will be a powerful barter item if anything bad were to happen to our supplies. I try to keep 6 months worth of my stuff on hand, but even stretching that to the max my lantis and humalog (which is synthetic) only lasts a year from manufacturing in the specified temps.

I hope this starts some discussion about the thesability of trying to make your own now. While it is completly possible, it is very serious and a dangerous undertaking.

Discuss.
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Old 11-25-2008, 05:12 PM
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I am not a diabetic but this was a great post!
Old 11-25-2008, 10:02 PM
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Good luck with that ...
Old 11-25-2008, 11:36 PM
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really...can you say infection boys and girls...
Old 11-25-2008, 11:48 PM
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really...can you say infection boys and girls...
From what?

Seriously?

Most diabetics use insulin made from bovine or beef panc anyway?
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Old 11-26-2008, 12:21 AM
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my wife is diabetic and this thought...along with dentistry...has come up! I must have missed how one is to injest this homemade insulin brew? Should we wittle very small syringes from sticks?
Old 11-26-2008, 05:12 PM
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my wife is diabetic and this thought...along with dentistry...has come up! I must have missed how one is to injest this homemade insulin brew? Should we wittle very small syringes from sticks?
via injection after having run tests on rabbits for dosage.

**edit**

I should have not assumed that all diabetics that were preparing for an emergency had a reusable syringe or a stash of disposable.

They sell a .31 guage syringe that breaks down to be sterilized it is made of glass and stainless steel.

Hope this helps someone I figured this would be invaluable, not getting that feeling.
Old 11-30-2008, 02:41 AM
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"Most diabetics use insulin made from bovine or beef panc anyway?"

No, not for the past couple of decades. A lot of people had problems with reactions to the insulins produced this way. Insulin is now produced by recombinant DNA technology, in which genes that produce human insulin are added to bacteria, who then produce the insulin. Because it is human insulin, the problem with reactions has been pretty much eliminated.

If you really want to try this, I strongly suggest that you get training in chemistry now- these are not simple cookbook steps, they will require a lot of skill. You'll also need to invest now in the chemistry lab equipment, and the chemical agents required. Good luck finding acid alcohol, etc after the SHTF.
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Old 11-30-2008, 03:33 AM
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"Most diabetics use insulin made from bovine or beef panc anyway?"

No, not for the past couple of decades. A lot of people had problems with reactions to the insulins produced this way. Insulin is now produced by recombinant DNA technology, in which genes that produce human insulin are added to bacteria, who then produce the insulin. Because it is human insulin, the problem with reactions has been pretty much eliminated.

If you really want to try this, I strongly suggest that you get training in chemistry now- these are not simple cookbook steps, they will require a lot of skill. You'll also need to invest now in the chemistry lab equipment, and the chemical agents required. Good luck finding acid alcohol, etc after the SHTF.
Yep, what was I thinking.

You are right about the recomb versions and reactions. But it worked once and the people who used it in the story were not chemist and the SHTF quite nicely, as a matter of fact they were in a foreign country and still managed it.

If not I guess laying down and dying instead of trying is better? I mean dying from an overdose vs ketoacidosis is so much better right? Been there and done that.

Hopefully it never comes to having to manufacture insulin. I would be all alone.
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Old 11-30-2008, 10:54 AM
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Please understand, I am not attempting to hijack this thread, but I have a question relating to the first post. As a type 2 diabetic, I am looking for herbal or more-easily obtainable oral meds for the emergency situation. Can someone point me to where I can find the answer to my question? Thank you.
Old 11-30-2008, 02:13 PM
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i tend to agree with notresigned my wife is currently on hemolog 70/30 it would be a great relief to find a more attainable soulution
Old 11-30-2008, 02:30 PM
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I think it would be tough to have the skills to pull that off. As a medical professional and someone with a year of organic chemistry behind me, I'm not sure I could pull it off.

But if my loved one was diabetic and I had no choice? I'd have to at least think about trying.

Also, diabetics are not going to be able to survive on white rice. Dietary control will become critical. Many of the things we store for cheap calories are terrible for diabetics. As you mentioned, stress alone can send a diabetics blood sugar through the roof. Now add poor diet and/or illness and you have disaster.

Hand in hand with uncontrolled diabetes you get kidney failure, poor circulation, heart disease, poor wound healing, blindness. You may not have the means to get treatment for any of this.

So I would be doing everything humanly possible now to lose the excess weight and decrease or eliminate the need for insulin..... even if that meant bariatric surgery. Whatever it takes. I'd do it now.
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Old 11-30-2008, 04:29 PM
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I don't want to take away from one's ability to make his or her own insulin nor complain that it is too much work. I control my diabetes with diet, some exercise (I know, I could do a lot more to exercise), and Glipizide Xl (5 mg twice a day). Does anyone know of herbs or natural remedies which could take the place of the Glipizide- or at least take the edge off, when it isn't available? Thank you.
Old 11-30-2008, 04:56 PM
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I don't want to take away from one's ability to make his or her own insulin nor complain that it is too much work. I control my diabetes with diet, some exercise (I know, I could do a lot more to exercise), and Glipizide Xl (5 mg twice a day). Does anyone know of herbs or natural remedies which could take the place of the Glipizide- or at least take the edge off, when it isn't available? Thank you.
I'm all about the natural remedies. But as a nurse, I've never seen one that actually works in replacing insulin or oral meds such as the sulfonylureas, of which glipizide is one.

But I have seen many people able to get totally off their meds by loosing the weight, exercising and controlling diet. I know that's easier said than done.
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Old 11-30-2008, 10:19 PM
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i tend to agree with notresigned my wife is currently on hemolog 70/30 it would be a great relief to find a more attainable soulution
In some countries including some states even in the US it does not take a prescription to get 70/30. I can not confirm this and will be calling a few pharmacies Monday.

If this were the fact I would slowly grab as much as I could keep useable and stay stocked. Odds are (hopefully) that you will not need to go loner than 6-12 months without a real fresh source.

As far as herbal remedies their are a few, for type 2's that are not insulin dependent I would suggest control through diet and exercise and eating less more often. Odds are you are already doing all of this anyway. I will grab the herbal stuff from another site and repost it later.
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Old 12-02-2008, 01:11 AM
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I certainly have nothing against someone trying to make their own insulin, should the sources of insulin dry up. I just wanted to point out that it is not a simple procedure. There will be a certain amount of specialized equipment, and also there will be chemical supplies (Sodium hydroxide, acid alcohol, and Ammonium sulphate were a few mentioned), things that are not common household items. Also, a centrifuge was used, also something not found in most homes (I did have one for a while, when I did insurance physicals in the home, and I would have to spin down the blood to send it in). Then, you'll need a supply of beef pancreas, and unless you have your own farm to raise cattle, they would be difficult to come by after the SHTF (I doubt that the local Albertsons will be open).

Now, for those who are type II diabetics, weight loss and exercise can reduce or even eliminate the need for the diabetic meds out there. Even those who are type II, but use insulin for control, may be able to reduce the need for insulin The classification of types of diabetes is based on the underlying pathology of the disease, not the use or non use of insulin. In type I diabetics, their immune system decided that the cells of the pancreas that produce insulin are invaders, and attacked and destroyed those cells. Those people do not make insulin, so they cannot survive without it. Type II diabetics, on the other hand, have difficulty using insulin. The receptors that bind to insulin do not work properly. The drugs that are taken orally do several things. Some stimulate insulin production. Some help sensitize the receptors, so that they bind to insulin more readily. And some affect how the liver processes sugar. And many combine some or all of these actions. Some type II diabetics become secondary failures, and require insulin for control. In many cases losing weight helps to restore the receptors to a closer to normal condition, and increased exercise helps to burn the excess sugar. So, if a situation occurs, where insulin or the oral drugs are no longer available, there's not a lot a type I diabetic can do. A type II diabetic, on the other hand, would be able to reduce or eliminate the need for the meds by diet and exercise. Losing weight in a SHTF scenario probably won't be too difficult, as you will be restricting the food store in order to survive longer.
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Old 12-02-2008, 06:46 AM
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No, that sounds like a stupid idea.

Not only do you have very little idea of what they are talking about, but the process is so long that it is likely most diabetics would die in the time taken to produce it. Even then I’m not sure exactly how much insulin you would yield. From my experience in college doing similar experiments (although not all at the same time) i can say: you WILL make mistakes and having to test your insulin on other people to be sure of its effectiveness is dangerous. Testing on humans is the number one rule you do not break. Last thing you want is to inject hydrocloric acid into your friends.

I'm also pretty sure that the method the drug companies use is easiest. It may be hard to get the bacterial cells and insert the insulin producing gene. But afterwards, purification is easy and probably cheap. It also does this in steady amounts of known concentration.

If i where you i would look for some article on the preservation of insulin. That’s the sort of thing that’s already been researched. The results could prove even more valuable.
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Old 12-02-2008, 07:50 AM
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No, that sounds like a stupid idea.

Not only do you have very little idea of what they are talking about, but the process is so long that it is likely most diabetics would die in the time taken to produce it. Even then Iím not sure exactly how much insulin you would yield. From my experience in college doing similar experiments (although not all at the same time) i can say: you WILL make mistakes and having to test your insulin on other people to be sure of its effectiveness is dangerous. Testing on humans is the number one rule you do not break. Last thing you want is to inject hydrocloric acid into your friends.

I'm also pretty sure that the method the drug companies use is easiest. It may be hard to get the bacterial cells and insert the insulin producing gene. But afterwards, purification is easy and probably cheap. It also does this in steady amounts of known concentration.

If i where you i would look for some article on the preservation of insulin. Thatís the sort of thing thatís already been researched. The results could prove even more valuable.
Absolutely agree about the testing on humans, hence as the original article stated, testing on rabbits.

Im out after this post, and I would love to see some insight into the methods currently in use by pharm companies to expand on, in any case none will be easy and many diabetics will probably die.

Mean time I would love to see someone make a post related to long term storage of insulin as well.

Im out.
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Old 12-02-2008, 10:29 AM
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is there any way to just take insulin from one person and give to another? like stick a big needle in my pancreas? that seems like a much easier method.
Old 12-02-2008, 10:37 AM
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is there any way to just take insulin from one person and give to another? like stick a big needle in my pancreas? that seems like a much easier method.
It is not quite that simple SM. Insulin is produced in the Isles of Langerhan within the pancreas. The pancreas is also responsible for fighting infection.

It not like there is some sac you can suck fluid out of. All of these production processes are on the cellular level. Each one makes a small amount and the sum of the parts equals the whole.

Kinda like a wet sponge. You can squeeze out the water, but if you stick a needle in it, all you will get is a clogged needle.
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