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Diabetes Mellitus

Human Biology (Year 12) - Technology in Treating Diseases

Ben Whitten

What is diabetes mellitus?

There are a number of key hormones which are involved in homeostasis. Having either too little or too much of some of these hormones can greatly disrupt homeostatic processes.

Diabetes mellitus is a hormonal disorder that causes disruptions to homeostasis; it causes an abnormally high blood glucose level, termed hyperglycaemia.

What is type 1 diabetes?

Type 1 diabetes, sometimes referred to as childhood diabetes or insulin-dependent diabetes is due to a fault in the immune system, which causes the destruction of beta cells in the pancreas; this means that no insulin is produced.

There is no cure for T1 diabetes, and it requires very regular injections of insulin. Recombinant DNA technology is used sometimes to insert insulin cells into the body.

Some symptoms of type 1 diabetes includes:

  • Weight loss

  • Nausea and vomiting

  • Acids and ketones in the blood (toxic)

  • Coma

  • Hyperglycaemia

  • Glucosuria (glucose in the urine)

  • Polyuria (producing large amounts of urine)

  • Excessive thirst

  • Fatigue

  • Visual impairments

What is type 2 diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes, aka late-onset, adult diabetes or non-insulin dependent diabetes occurs when the beta cells do produce insulin but the body cells are unresponsive to it, as they have been overloaded with insulin from extremely high glucose consumption.

There is no cure and usually requires medications, a healthy diet, lifestyle alterations, regular exercise and close monitoring with a doctor.

Some symptoms for type 2 diabetes includes:

  • Excessive hunger

  • Open sores and cuts

  • Hyperglycaemia

  • Glucosuria

  • Polyuria

  • Excessive thirst

  • Fatigue

  • Visual impairment

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