This Day In History: 1847-07-25


Paul Langerhans (1847 – 1888) was born on this day.
He was a German physiologist and biologist, best known for his discovery of the eponymous islets of Langerhans in the pancreas, the pancreatic cells which produce insulin. On contracting tuberculosis in 1874 Langerhans resigned from his medical duties at the University of Freiburg and moved to Funchal on the island of Madeira (1875) where he made a partial recovery, resumed practising medicine, and began studying polychaetes or marine worms.

Langerhans described around 195 taxa and is honoured in the name of a genus of polychaetes, Langerhansia, and in the names of a number of species under langerhansi.