Cut the Crap: The difference between HumaLog and NovoLog

Sorry, this one is pretty short compared to my other "cut the crap" blog posts. I really don't have a whole lot of free time and with the long discussion about the differences between humalog and novolog I thought it would be interesting to post something. Hopefully I didn't make any errors and it came out interesting.

There is a controversy right now among individuals about the differences between the two types of rapid acting insulin Humalog (Insulin Lispro) and Novolog (Insulin Apart). People claim they are the same, they are different and one works better than the other. This post will focus on the structure of the human insulin compared to each analog, and molecular mechanisms of each type, how they are formulated and how each should work. I'm not saying one is better than the other. The actions of each are specific to each person and the choice of insulin should always be a discussion between you and your physician. I have my personal preference and that's exactly it, my personal preference for how I control my disease.

The first thing is to distinguish between the different types of insulin. This post will focus specifically on 2 of the rapid acting insulins, Humalog and Novolog. I am working on another blog post about how long acting insulins work. While they are different, they can be used interchangably. Pharmacies will readily substitute one for the other if they are out and the patient does not have a strong preference. This has been my experience, yours may/will differ.

So how are Novolog and Humalog different from regular human insulin?

This is a very important topic and will take up the majority of this post because this will explain why one may work better than others. Endogenously secreted human insulin is a relatively simple protein. I'll bypass the synthesis and processing, if you want me to post about that please say so. Insulin is secreted as a...

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Tags: SuFu, diabetes, insulin, interesting, medical, school

Comment by Doris D on September 15, 2011 at 12:00am
This intreste me b/c Humalog dosent work to well for me and my bs's but Novolog does. Can u go father into it?
Comment by Matthew Yarbrough on September 15, 2011 at 3:13pm
lily (makers of humalog) use natural rubber solids in their stoppers, what made me switch. I actually preferred humalog but had to switch due to a latex allergy.
Comment by SuFu, Ph.D. on September 20, 2011 at 9:26pm
Doris - I will try. Exams are the next weeks so I don't know how much time I will have.

Matthew - Didn't know that. Thanks! I'll remember that when I'm in the clinic. I'll have to talk with the Lily rep about that when I see them again. See if we can do something about that.
Comment by Bernard on June 24, 2013 at 10:37am

Can I get an invite to read your post? CVS Caremark has just told me they no longer cover Humalog. This p***es me off, as Apidra doesn't work well in my pump. And I've no experience with Novolog.

Comment by Daisy Mae on August 25, 2013 at 1:28pm

Comment by Daisy Mae on August 25, 2013 at 1:37pm

i have tried to switch insulins because novolog is no longer covered by my insurance. i have had to use humolog annd have terrible results. my bs are all
the place. i am having my bs are in the 400s and then my bs crass down to the 20s. SOS.

Comment by jmjelde on November 13, 2013 at 1:16pm

Can I get an invite to read your post? I am with CVS Caremark too and I take Humalog.

Comment by jnick303 on September 24, 2014 at 4:11pm

Can I get an invite to your post, Ive been taking Humalog but now they are switching me to Novalog do to formulary changes.

Comment by Barbara on January 25, 2015 at 7:24pm

I would like to read more. Do I need to be invited? I am concerned that I have developed an intolerance to Novolog and need to figure out which insulin to turn to next.


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