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Marine snail inspires fast-acting injectable insulin for better Diabetes control

Apr 07, 2022
Cone snails collected from the Solomon Islands. Photo credit: Helena Safavi.

For millions of people with diabetes, insulin is essential medicine. But for some ocean-dwelling predators, insulin is a weapon. With a burst of venom, a fish-hunting cone snail can drop the blood sugar of its prey so precipitously that it quickly becomes paralyzed and defenseless. That remarkable phenomenon has inspired scientists at University of Utah Health, Stanford University and University of Copenhagen to make better injectable insulins for patients.