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Clin Pharmacol Ther. 1982 Apr;31(4):494-500.

Kinetics of subcutaneous NPH insulin in diabetics.


Kinetics of subcutaneous NPH insulin were studied in newly diagnosed insulin-dependent diabetics. Using a biotelemetric technique with small Geiger-Müller detectors applied to the skin surface, the disappearance of 125I-NPH insulin fron subcutis was monoexponential with a mean half-life of 6.6 +/- 3.3 (SD) hr. A model is presented to compare the disappearance rates of subcutaneous 125I-NPH insulin and the calculated plasma appearance insulin curve derived from the actual plasma insulin concentration measurements, assuming a one-compartment model and first-order kinetics. Areas under the absorption- and appearance-time curves calculated from external measurements and from plasma insulin concentrations were identical. There was a strong correlation between plasma concentrations and absorbed amounts of labeled insulin (r = 0.8782, P less than 0.001), as there was between the blood glucose-lowering effects and percent absorbed insulin per hour (r = 0.7659, P less than 0.001). Our results indicate that the disappearance rate of iodine-labeled insulin was a relevant biological expression of insulin absorption from subcutis and a reliable noninvasive method of quantitative determination of insulin concentration in blood.

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