Historical Tidbit : Paul Langerhans (July 25, 1847-July, 20, 1888)
Alan D. Rogol MD, Ph.D
Paul Langerhans was a German pathologist who studied medicine in Jena and Berlin. While still a medical student he discovered 9 different cells within the pancreatic islets including those that secrete insulin-small, irregularly shaped polygonal cells without granules forming small groupings. He published his findings as a dissertation in 1869. In 1893 GE Languesse, a French histologist named them “islots de Langerhans” (C. R. Soc Biol 1893; 45:819) whose insulin secreting function was only later discovered.
Langerhans contracted tuberculosis in his 30’s and sought treatment at various places around Europe, settling down in Funchal, the Madeira Islands he continued his scientific studies becoming an expert and writing scientific papers on the local marine worms and other invertebrates.