Insulin is one of the major regulatory hormones of intermediate metabolism throughout the body. The biological actions of this hormone involve integration of carbohydrate, protein, and lipid metabolism. Insulin enhances membrane transport of glucose, amino acids, and certain ions. It also promotes glycogen storage, formation of triglycerides and synthesis of proteins and nucleic acids. Immunocytochemical investigations have localized insulin in the B cells of pancreatic islets of Langerhans. Deficiency of insulin results in diabetes mellitus, one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality in the general population. Insulin is also present in tumors of B cell origin such as insulinoma.
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