Recent advances in the determination of insulins from biological fluids

Publication: Contribution to journalScientific review articlesResearch


The qualitative and quantitative determination of insulin and its related substances (e. g., C-peptide) is of great importance in many different areas of analytical chemistry. In particular, due to the steadily increasing prevalence of metabolic disorders such as diabetes mellitus, an adequate control of the circulating amount of insulin is desirable. In addition, also in forensics and doping control analysis, the determination of insulin in blood, urine or other biological matrices plays a major role. However, in order to establish general reference values for insulin and C-peptide for diabetology, the comparability of measured concentrations is indispensable. This has not yet been fully implemented, although enormous progress has been made in recent years, and the search for a "gold standard" method is still ongoing. In addition to established ligand-binding assays, an increasing number of mass-spectrometric methods have been developed and employed as the to-date available systems (for example, high-resolution/high accuracy mass spectrometers) provide the sensitivity required to determine analyte concentrations in the sub-ng/mL (sub-100pmol/L) level. Meanwhile, also high-throughput measurements have been realized to meet the requirement of testing a high number of samples in a short period of time. Further developments aim at enabling the online measurement of insulin in the blood with the help of an insulin sensor and, in the following, in addition to a brief review, today's state of the art testing developments are summarized.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAdvances in clinical chemistry
Pages (from-to)115-167
Number of pages53
Publication statusPublished - 01.01.2019


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