What is insulin regular human, and what is it used for?
Regular human insulin is a biological product used to treat type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Human insulin is a natural hormone secreted by the pancreas.
Regular human insulin used to treat diabetes is produced in labs using DNA recombinant technology. Animal insulins were used in the past, but currently, the only type of insulin available in the U.S. is human insulin, which is structurally similar to the natural human insulin.
Insulin, released by the pancreas after a meal, regulates the metabolism of carbohydrates, fats and proteins absorbed from food. Reduced insulin secretion or faulty functioning of insulin results in diabetes, a metabolic disorder that impairs the ability of the cells to absorb glucose for energy, resulting in high blood glucose levels (hyperglycemia). Dysfunction of insulin affects the entire body and can damage all organs, particularly, nerves, kidneys, and eyes.
Insulin stimulates the uptake of glucose from blood by all the internal organs, most importantly, the liver, skeletal muscles and fat cells (adipose tissue). In the liver, insulin promotes storage of energy by stimulating conversion of glucose into glycogen and inhibiting glycogen breakdown. It also promotes the synthesis of fatty acids in the liver which are released into the bloodstream for cellular conversion into energy.
In the skeletal muscles, insulin promotes protein and glycogen synthesis, and uptake of glucose and amino acids, the building blocks of proteins. Insulin also promotes energy storage in adipose tissue by stimulating the breakdown of triglycerides into free fatty acids, reducing circulating triglyceride levels in the blood. Insulin level in nondiabetic individuals typically rises after a meal and decreases when blood glucose levels drop to base level.
Regular insulin is administered before mealtimes to enable glucose metabolism and maintain normal glucose levels in patients with type 1 or type 2 diabetes. Insulin is also used to treat complications from diabetes such as severe hyperglycemia and ketoacidosis, a condition with buildup of ketones in blood. Ketone is a type of acid that results when the liver breaks down fats for cellular energy, because the cells are unable to use glucose without insulin.
The types of human insulin used to treat diabetes are categorized by the time taken for onset, peak and duration of insulin effects. Regular human insulins are short-acting insulins with onset of effect in 30-60 minutes, peaking in two to four hours and duration for up to eight hours. Short-acting insulins are known as bolus insulins, which act fast to bring down blood sugar spikes that come with meals. Regular insulin may be administered intravenously in hospitals, with insulin pump implants, or self-administered subcutaneously with needles, pens, or jet injectors.