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One of the difficulties in the development of a reliable artificial pancreas for people with type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM) is the lack of accurate models of an individual's response to insulin. Most control algorithms proposed to control the glucose level in subjects with T1DM are model-based. Avoiding postprandial hypoglycemia (<;60 mg/dl) while minimizing prandial hyperglycemia (>;180 mg/dl) has shown to be difficult in a closed-loop setting due to the patient-model mismatch. In this paper, control-relevant models are developed for T1DM, as opposed to models that minimize a prediction error. The parameters of these models are chosen conservatively to minimize the likelihood of hypoglycemia events. To limit the conservatism due to large intersubject variability, the models are personalized using a priori patient characteristics. The models are implemented in a zone model predictive control algorithm. The robustness of these controllers is evaluated in silico, where hypoglycemia is completely avoided even after large meal disturbances. The proposed control approach is simple and the controller can be set up by a physician without the need for control expertise.