Abstract The absorption of intact, biologically active insulin from the ileum, or the ascending colon was measured by the resulting changes in blood glucose concentration. One hour after injection of the ascending colon with a 1 ml volume containing 12 u insulin and 2 mg DOC the blood glucose level was reduced to 50% of the initial value, i.e. 31±2.0 mg%. When insulin was injected directly into the lumen of the ileum, the addition of 3 mg soybean trypsin inhibitor boosted the insulin effect. Direct injection of the ileum with 12 u insulin and 3 mg soybean trypsin inhibitor resulted in a significant drop in blood glucose: 69±5.0 and 85±8.1% of the initial concentration, following 1 and 2 hours, respectively. In the presence of soybean trypsin inhibitor, it was found that the endogenous bile salts in the ileum aid in the absorption of biologically active insulin.