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Pituitary Gland

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Pituitary Gland

The pituitary gland is a small endocrine system organ that controls a multitude of important functions in the body.

Credit: SEER Training Modules / U. S. National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute

Pituitary Gland:

The pituitary gland is a small endocrine organ that controls a multitude of important functions in the body. It is divided into an anterior lobe, intermediate lobe and posterior lobe, all of which are involved in hormone production. The posterior pituitary is composed of axons from the neurons of the hypothalamus. Blood vessel connections between the hypothalamus and pituitary allow hypothalamic hormones to control pituitary hormone secretion. The pituitary gland is termed the "Master Gland" because it directs other organs and endocrine glands, such as the adrenal glands, to suppress or induce hormone production.

Function:

The pituitary gland is involved in several functions of the body including:
  • Growth Hormone Production
  • Production of Hormones That Act on Other Endocrine Glands
  • Production of Hormones That Act on the Muscles and the Kidneys
  • Endocrine Function Regulation
  • Storage of Hormones Produced by the Hypothalamus

Location:

Directionally, the pituitary gland is located in the middle of the base of the brain, inferior to the hypothalamus.

Images:

More Information:

For additional information on the pituitary gland, see:

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