Insulin and the blood-brain barrier

Curr Pharm Des. 2003;9(10):795-800. doi: 10.2174/1381612033455323.


Although several possible mechanisms exist by which the pancreatic hormone, insulin, could enter the brain from the blood, most evidence suggests that the majority of it enters primarily by a receptor-mediated transport process. Many factors influence the rate of entry, including fasting and refeeding and several pathological conditions. Within the brain insulin acts on specific receptors to influence a number of behaviors, and especially caloric homeostasis and cognition.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biological Transport / physiology
  • Blood-Brain Barrier / physiology*
  • Extracellular Space / physiology
  • Humans
  • Insulin / metabolism
  • Insulin / physiology*


  • Insulin