Last Reviewed : 12/30/2020

Insulin (from the Latin, insula meaning island) is a peptide hormone produced by beta cells of the pancreatic islets, and by the Brockmann body in some teleost fish. It has important effects on the metabolism of carbohydrates, fats and protein by promoting the absorption of, especially, glucose from the blood into fat, liver and skeletal muscle cells. In these tissues the absorbed glucose is converted into either glycogen via glycogenesis or fats (triglycerides) via lipogenesis, or, in the case of the liver, into both. Glucose production (and excretion into the blood) by the liver is strongly inhibited by high concentrations of insulin in the blood. Circulating insulin also affects the synthesis of proteins in a wide variety of tissues. In high concentrations in the blood it is therefore an anabolic hormone, promoting the conversion of small molecules in the blood into large molecules inside the cells. Low insulin levels in the blood have the opposite effect by promoting widespread catabolism.

The pancreatic beta cells (ß cells) are known to be sensitive to the glucose concentration in the blood. When the blood glucose levels are high they secrete insulin into the blood; when the levels are low they cease their secretion of this hormone into the general circulation. Their neighboring alpha cells, probably by taking their cues from the beta cells, secrete glucagon into the blood in the opposite manner: high secretion rates when the blood glucose concentrations are low, and low secretion rates when the glucose levels are high. High glucagon concentrations in the blood plasma powerfully stimulate the liver to release glucose into the blood by glycogenolysis and gluconeogenesis, thus having the opposite effect on the blood glucose level to that produced by high insulin concentrations. The secretion of insulin and glucagon into the blood in response to the blood glucose concentration is the primary mechanism responsible for keeping the glucose levels in the extracellular fluids within very narrow limits at rest, after meals, and during exercise and starvation.


We researched this topic for you and found the following best online resources. They are categorized into basic, advanced, and research level based on the extent of information you need. You will be taken to the respective websites by pressing on the links below.


Basic information: web md types of insulin for diabetes treatment insulin basics medline plus insulin news medical what is insulin? health line everything you need to know about insulin national institute of diabetets and digestive and kidney disorders insulin mayoclinic diabetes treatment: using insulin to manage blood sugar diabetes .co insulin lab tests online insulin live science insulin resistance: risk factor for heart disease and diabetes better health diabetes and insulin very well how insulin works in the body


Advanced information:
medical news today what is insulin? medicine net insulin britannica insulin medscape insulin resistance emedicine health insulin reaction upto date patient education: diabetes mellitus type 1: insulin treatment (beyond the basics) insulin resistance syndrome by goutham rao, m.d., university of pittsburgh medical center–st. Margaret, pittsburgh, pennsylvania am fam physician. 2001 mar 15;63(6):1159-1164.


Research: review article front. Physiol., 29 october 2014 | carotid body, insulin, and metabolic diseases: unraveling the links by sílvia v. Conde et al., insulin receptor signaling in normal and insulin-resistant states by jérémie boucher et al., doi: 10.1101/cshperspect.a009191 muhammad a. Abdul-ghani and ralph a. Defronzo, “pathogenesis of insulin resistance in skeletal muscle,”journal of biomedicine and biotechnology, vol. 2010, article id 476279, 19 pages, 2010. Doi:10.1155/2010/476279 silvija cvitic, gernot desoye, and ursula hiden, “glucose, insulin, and oxygen interplay in placental hypervascularisation in diabetes mellitus,” biomed research international, vol. 2014, article id 145846, 12 pages, 2014. Doi:10.1155/2014/145846

Kalra s, farooqi mh, el-houni ae. High-mix insulins. Indian j endocr metab [serial online] 2015 [cited 2016 oct 17];19:686-90. Available from: review article front. Endocrinol., 21 august 2013 | clinical implications of adipocytokines and newly emerging metabolic factors with relation to insulin resistance and cardiovascular health by sung hee choi*, eun shil hong and soo lim fructose, weight gain, and the insulin resistance syndrome by sharon s elliott et al., am j clin nutr november 2002
vol. 76 no. 5 911-922 fructose, insulin resistance, and metabolic dyslipidemia by heather basciano et al., nutrition & metabolism20052:5 doi: 10.1186/1743-7075-2-5 intense exercise has unique effects on both insulin release and its roles in glucoregulation by errol b. Marliss and mladen vranic diabetes 2002 feb; 51(suppl 1): s271-s283. Http:// obesity and insulin resistance by barbara b. Kahn, jeffrey s. Flier j clin invest. 2000;106(4):473-481. Doi:10.1172/jci10842. retinol-binding protein 4 and insulin resistance in lean, obese, and diabetic subjects by timothy e. Graham, m.d., et al., n engl j med 2006; 354:2552-2563june 15, 2006doi: 10.1056/nejmoa054862


Related videos: insulin, glucose and you how to do an insulin injection understanding insulin resistance and what you can do about it video: treating diabetes with insulin


Presentations/quiz/newspaper articles: times of india your insulin, hepatitis b vaccine may get cheaper mirror insulin pill could give hope to millions of diabetics by replacing daily injections business insider a 93-year-old drug that some children can't live without tells us everything that's wrong with american healthcare the hindu an insulin pill that could make you drop the needle insulin pill could make diabetes treatment ‘ouchless’ daily mail is the end of insulin jabs in sight? New treatment made from diabetics' skin could 'reboot' the pancreas

read more:
f huffington post insulin resistance: the real reason why you aren't losing weight

Please leave your comments:

Related Articles