Insulin, serum or plasma
Serum, Sodium Heparin / Na, K EDTA / Na Fluoride plasma
Insulin is a polypeptide hormone (MW 6000) composed of two nonidentical chains, A and B, which are joined by two
disulfide bonds. Insulin is formed from a precursor, proinsulin (MW 9000), in the beta cells of the pancreas. In proinsulin, the A and B chains are joined by a connecting peptide, referred to as the C-peptide. Both insulin and C-peptide are stored in secretory granules of the islet cells of the pancreas and are then secreted. Immunoassays for insulin have been widely used to provide supplementary information, first, for the diagnosis of diabetes mellitus and, second, for differential diagnosis of fasting hypoglycemia to discriminate between insulinoma and factitious hypoglycemia.
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