This is an amazing story I stumbled upon from, adapted from and

evasaxlEva Saxl was 19 in 1940, living with her husband, Victor, in Shanghai after fleeing Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia.  She developed T1 and was put on insulin. However in 1941, due to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor and the increasing Japanese occupation of China, all pharmacies were closed in Shanghai.

Eva and Victor found the book, “Beckman’s Internal Medicine,” which detailed the methods used by Drs. Banting and Best.  There were able to buy buffalo pancreases and extract brown-colored insulin.  After much testing, Eva tried it and it worked! She was able to share insulin with over 400 people with the insulin they made in a borrowed small laboratory.

evasaxl2Such a fascinating story!

Read more:

Diabetes Legends: Eva Saxl – who made her own insulin during WWII

Eva’s Insulin, January 1, 2002,







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