… A journey driven by scientific curiosity, desire to change the world, business sense and public spirit in addition to unusual commitment and willpower
In 1922, August Krogh, a professor at the University of Copenhagen, went on a lecture tour of universities on the east coast of the United States after receiving the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1920. During this tour, his wife, Marie Krogh, persuaded the renowned Danish scientist to take a detour to Toronto, Canada, where the scientists Frederick Banting, Charles Best and John Macleod had just succeeded in manufacturing active insulin. The outcome was that August Krogh received permission to manufacture insulin in the Nordic countries. This not only changed the lives of August and Marie Krogh but also became the starting-point for a unique scientific odyssey and Danish business adventure.
August Krogh returned to Copenhagen in December 1922 with permission to manufacture insulin and instinctively knew that he had a historic opportunity and responsibility to change the lives of thousands of incurably sick people with diabetes in Denmark and the other Nordic countries. In a commemorative publication from 1924, Krogh gave a comprehensive account of his role in securing the permission and his own journey to Canada: ”I was soon convinced that it would be invaluable to bring the benefits of insulin to Denmark …”
From the very beginning, the primary considerations focused on the special scientific and societal responsibility associated with producing life-saving medicine and how this could best be ensured in a foundation structure. Thus, science and public spirit were integral to the Group’s history and raison d’être and have been ever since. Today, this spirit is extremely important for the Group and its activities: contributing significantly to research and development that improves the health and welfare of people.