Video provided by the University of Chicago Alumni Association
Donald F. Steiner, MD, has devoted his life to groundbreaking research on diabetes and has won international acclaim for his discoveries on the biosynthesis of insulin, a key hormone in controlling blood sugar and its utilization. He recently received the 2014 University of Chicago Alumni Medal.
In this video, he speaks to how his studies led to the discovery of proinsulin and preproinsulin, precursors that enable insulin’s production in the body. These discoveries facilitated the development of synthetic human insulin for diabetes therapy, which is now the standard form of clinical diabetes treatment around the world. A fragment of proinsulin—the C-peptide—also led Steiner to develop a novel way to measure the production of insulin in the body that is widely used internationally for this purpose.