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Insulin is a hormone that regulates energy and glucose metabolism in the body. Insulin causes cells in the liver, muscle, and fat tissue to take up glucose from the blood, storing it as glycogen in the liver and muscle. In the absence of insulin, the body begins to use fat as an energy source.

When control of insulin levels fails, diabetes mellitus will result. Therefore, insulin is used medically to treat some forms of diabetes mellitus. Patients with Type 1 diabetes mellitus depend on insulin injections for their survival because the hormone is no longer produced internally.