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Charles Best (L) and Frederick Banting (R) discovered insulin, 1928. Recombinant DNA technology launched a new era in biology. The idea that DNA still "functions" when transferred from one organism to another opened up worlds of possibilities. Even as the technology was being perfected, scientists were already thinking of practical applications. One of the first was to use recombinant DNA technology to make insulin. Before the discovery and isolation of insulin in 1922, a diagnosis of diabetes was a death sentence. Diabetics lack a protein called insulin, produced by the pancreas, which helps the body regulate sugars. Without insulin, the body cannot use sugars properly for energy. There was, and still is, no cure for diabetes.
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