JOHN BAVOSI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JOHN BAVOSI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Illustration of the synthesis & secretion of insulin from a beta cell of an islet of Langerhans, the endocrine component of the human pancreas. The beta cell is shown in section, with various organelles visible: mitochondria (sites of energy synthesis) appear green, with the Golgi body coloured gold. At top is the cell nucleus (spherical) with the nucleolus coloured purple. Insulin is packaged in secretory granules (blue spheres in pink saucers) which migrate through the cytoplasm & are secreted directly into a blood capillary (bottom). Insulin is a hormone which controls carbohydrate metabolism by promoting the intracellular uptake of glucose.
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