The action of lysine as an antidiabetic agent was examined in human volunteers. Eight patients with type 2 DM were orally supplemented with L-lysine hydrochloride 1 g/day in two doses along with antidiabetic tablets (glyciphage or chlorformine), for a period of two months. Periodically their plasma fasting sugar and insulin receptor tyrosine kinase activity was measured in their monocytes. Eight normal healthy volunteers served as controls for comparison of receptor tyrosine kinase activity. Insulin receptor tyrosine kinase was isolated from monocytes by immunoprecipitation and the activity was determined using exogenous substrate poly glu-tyr (4:1) and radioactive ATP. Phosphorylated peptide was separated by electrophoresis and quantified using a liquid scintillation system. The enzyme activity was significantly low (22074 +/- 1728 dpm/ml immunoprecipitate) in subjects with diabetes when compared to non-diabetic control group (50,775 +/- 3597). Lysine treatment enhanced the enzyme activity by 31% in patients with diabetes and decreased their blood sugar by 27%.