The adjective endocrine describes the glands in your body that secrete hormones into your blood. The hormones released by your endocrine glands have an effect on almost every function of your body.

Endocrine can refer to the glands in your body — called endocrine glands — and it also can describe the larger system that includes your glands and your hormones, called the endocrine system. The endocrine system is responsible for lots of functions, including regulating growth, metabolism, and even your mood. So the next time you’re in a really good mood, thank your endocrine secretions.

Definitions of endocrine

adj of or belonging to endocrine glands or their secretions

endocrine system”
of or relating to exocrine glands or their secretions

n any of the glands of the endocrine system that secrete hormones directly into the bloodstream

ductless gland, endocrine gland
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thyroid, thyroid gland
located near the base of the neck
parathyroid, parathyroid gland
any one of four endocrine glands situated above or within the thyroid gland
adrenal, adrenal gland, suprarenal gland
either of a pair of complex endocrine glands situated near the kidney
prostate, prostate gland
a firm partly muscular chestnut sized gland in males at the neck of the urethra; produces a viscid secretion that is the fluid part of semen
thymus, thymus gland
a ductless glandular organ at the base of the neck that produces lymphocytes and aids in producing immunity; atrophies with age
hypophysis, pituitary, pituitary body, pituitary gland
the master gland of the endocrine system; located at the base of the brain
adenohypophysis, anterior pituitary, anterior pituitary gland
the anterior lobe of the pituitary body; primarily glandular in nature
pars anterior, pars distilis
the anterior part of the anterior pituitary
pars intermedia
a thin piece of tissue that has become part of the posterior pituitary
neurohypophysis, pars nervosa, posterior pituitary, posterior pituitary gland
the posterior lobe of the pituitary body; primarily glandular in nature
epiphysis, epiphysis cerebri, pineal body, pineal gland
a small endocrine gland in the brain; situated beneath the back part of the corpus callosum; secretes melatonin
islands of Langerhans, isles of Langerhans, islets of Langerhans
cell clusters in the pancreas that form the endocrine part of that organ; secrete insulin and other hormones
adrenal cortex
the cortex of the adrenal gland; secretes corticosterone and sex hormones
adrenal medulla
the medulla of the adrenal gland; secretes epinephrine
corpus luteum
yellow endocrine tissue that forms in a ruptured Graafian follicle following the release of an ovum; it degenerates after a few days unless pregnancy has begun
gonad, sex gland
a gland in which gametes (sex cells) are produced
(vertebrates) one of usually two organs that produce ova and secrete estrogen and progesterone
hermaphroditic gonad that contains both testicular and ovarian tissue
Type of:
gland, secreter, secretor, secretory organ
any of various organs that synthesize substances needed by the body and release it through ducts or directly into the bloodstream

n the secretion of an endocrine gland that is transmitted by the blood to the tissue on which it has a specific effect

hormone, internal secretion
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ACTH, adrenocorticotrophic hormone, adrenocorticotrophin, adrenocorticotropic hormone, adrenocorticotropin, corticotrophin, corticotropin
a hormone produced by the anterior pituitary gland that stimulates the adrenal cortex
Adrenalin, adrenaline, epinephrin, epinephrine
a catecholamine secreted by the adrenal medulla in response to stress (trade name Adrenalin); stimulates autonomic nerve action
GI hormones, gastrointestinal hormone
hormones that affect gastrointestinal functioning
a hormone secreted by the pancreas; stimulates increases in blood sugar levels in the blood (thus opposing the action of insulin)
gonadotrophic hormone, gonadotrophin, gonadotropic hormone, gonadotropin
hormone secreted by the anterior pituitary gland and placenta; stimulates the gonads and controls reproductive activity
hormone secreted by the isles of Langerhans in the pancreas; regulates storage of glycogen in the liver and accelerates oxidation of sugar in cells
hormone secreted by the pineal gland
a hormone that is released by nerve impulses (e.g., norepinephrine or vasopressin)
Pitocin, oxytocin
hormone secreted by the posterior pituitary gland (trade name Pitocin); stimulates contractions of the uterus and ejection of milk
parathormone, parathyroid hormone
hormone synthesized and released into the blood stream by the parathyroid glands; regulates phosphorus and calcium in the body and functions in neuromuscular excitation and blood clotting
hormone secreted by the corpus luteum during the last days of pregnancy; relaxes the pelvic ligaments and prepares the uterus for labor
RH, hypothalamic releasing factor, hypothalamic releasing hormone, releasing factor, releasing hormone
any of several hormones produced in the hypothalamus and carried by a vein to the anterior pituitary gland where they stimulate the release of anterior pituitary hormones; each of these hormones causes the anterior pituitary to secrete a specific hormone
STH, growth hormone, human growth hormone, somatotrophic hormone, somatotrophin, somatotropic hormone, somatotropin
a hormone produced by the anterior pituitary gland; promotes growth in humans
hormone secreted by the thymus; stimulates immunological activity of lymphoid tissue
thyroid hormone
any of several closely related compounds that are produced by the thyroid gland and are active metabolically
ADH, Pitressin, antidiuretic hormone, vasopressin
hormone secreted by the posterior pituitary gland (trade name Pitressin) and also by nerve endings in the hypothalamus; affects blood pressure by stimulating capillary muscles and reduces urine flow by affecting reabsorption of water by kidney tubules
sex hormone, steroid, steroid hormone
any hormone affecting the development and growth of sex organs
a steroid having androgenic activity; obtained from the cortex of the adrenal gland
a steroid hormone that is produced by the adrenal cortex of animals; affects functioning of gonads and has anti-inflammatory activity
any of a group of chemicals including epinephrine and norepinephrine that are produced in the medulla of the adrenal gland
MSH, melanocyte-stimulating hormone
a hormone secreted by the anterior pituitary gland that controls the degree of pigmentation in melanocytes
TSH, thyroid-stimulating hormone, thyrotrophic hormone, thyrotrophin, thyrotropic hormone, thyrotropin
anterior pituitary hormone that stimulates the function of the thyroid gland
TRF, TRH, protirelin, thyrotropin-releasing factor, thyrotropin-releasing hormone
hormone released by the hypothalamus that controls the release of thyroid-stimulating hormone from the anterior pituitary
noradrenaline, norepinephrine
a catecholamine precursor of epinephrine that is secreted by the adrenal medulla and also released at synapses
polypeptide hormone secreted by the mucous lining of the stomach; when peptides and amino acids are present in the small intestine the secretion of gastric acid is stimulated
a gastrointestinal hormone that stimulates the secretion of pancreatic enzymes and the contraction and emptying of the gall bladder; its release is stimulated by the presence of fatty acids and amino acids in the small intestine
a gastrointestinal hormone that stimulates the secretion of water and bicarbonate from the pancreas and bile ducts whenever the stomach empties too much acid into the small intestine
a gastrointestinal hormone produced by epithelial cells lining the fundus of the stomach; appears to be a stimulant for appetite and feeding, but is also a strong stimulant of growth hormone secretion from the anterior pituitary
a gastrointestinal hormone that apparently participates in controlling smooth muscle contractions in the stomach and small intestine
Lente Iletin, Lente Insulin
trade names for forms of insulin that are used to treat diabetes mellitus
Humulin, recombinant human insulin
a form of insulin (trade name Humulin) made from recombinant DNA that is identical to human insulin; used to treat diabetics who are allergic to preparations made from beef or pork insulin
trade name of a synthetic human growth hormone given to children deficient in the hormone; use by athletes and weightlifters is banned
calcitonin, thyrocalcitonin
thyroid hormone that tends to lower the level of calcium in the blood plasma and inhibit resorption of bone
T, tetraiodothyronine, thyroxin, thyroxine
hormone produced by the thyroid glands to regulate metabolism by controlling the rate of oxidation in cells
T, liothyronine, triiodothyronine
thyroid hormone similar to thyroxine but with one less iodine atom per molecule and produced in smaller quantity; exerts the same biological effects as thyroxine but is more potent and briefer
secreted by the adrenal cortex; involved in regulating water and electrolyte balance in the body
progestin, progestogen
any of a group of steroid hormones that have the effect of progesterone
androgen, androgenic hormone
male sex hormone that is produced in the testes and responsible for typical male sexual characteristics
FSH, follicle-stimulating hormone
a gonadotropic hormone that is secreted by the anterior pituitary and stimulates growth of Graafian follicles in female mammals, and activates the cells in male mammals that form sperm
HCG, human chorionic gonadotrophin, human chorionic gonadotropin
hormone produced early in pregnancy by the placenta; detection in the urine and serum is the basis for one kind of pregnancy test
ICSH, LH, interstitial cell-stimulating hormone, luteinizing hormone
a gonadotropic hormone that is secreted by the anterior pituitary; stimulates ovulation in female mammals and stimulates androgen release in male mammals
lactogenic hormone, luteotropin, prolactin
gonadotropic hormone secreted by the anterior pituitary; in females it stimulates growth of the mammary glands and lactation after parturition
estrogen, oestrogen
a general term for female steroid sex hormones that are secreted by the ovary and responsible for typical female sexual characteristics
adrenal cortical steroid, corticoid, corticosteroid
a steroid hormone produced by the adrenal cortex or synthesized; administered as drugs they reduce swelling and decrease the body's immune response
Pediapred, Prelone, prednisolone
a glucocorticoid (trade names Pediapred or Prelone) used to treat inflammatory conditions
Deltasone, Liquid Pred, Meticorten, Orasone, prednisone
a dehydrogenated analogue of cortisol (trade names Orasone or Deltasone or Liquid Pred or Meticorten); used as an anti-inflammatory drug in the treatment of arthritis and as an immunosuppressant
anabolic steroid
any of a group of synthetic steroid hormones used to stimulate muscle and bone growth; more than 100 have been developed and each requires a prescription to be used legally in the United States; sometimes used illicitly by athletes to increase their strength
Type of:
a functionally specialized substance (especially one that is not a waste) released from a gland or cell

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