PSY290H1 Lecture 5: Hormones and Sex
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Hormones and Sex
The Endocrine System
• The endocrine system links the brain to organs that control body metabolism, growth and development
• Its mode of communication is via hormones
• Hormones are chemical messengers that are released into the bloodstream or tissue fluid affecting
target cells some distance away
Three Major Classes of
1. Protein and Peptides
Two Main Mechanisms of Hormone Action
a) Protein Hormone Action
b) Steriod Hormone Action
8 Hormones Act on a Wide Variety of Cellular
-A hormone may have different effects on each target, and act to coordinate different parts ofthe body 8
Hormones Act on a Wide Variety of Cellular Mechanisms
-One hormone may cause a response in more than one type of receptor
-One target organ may respond to several hormones—this is especially true in the brain
-A hormone may have different effects on each target, and act to coordinate different parts of
●Tropic hormones influence the release of
hormones by other glands.
●Posterior pituitary: hormones synthesized in the
●Anterior pituitary: tropic hormones
Cyclic vs. Steady Gonadal Hormone Levels
●Female hormones go through a 28- day cycle: the menstrual cycle.
●Male hormone levels are ‘constant’.
●Anterior pituitary activity is controlled by the hypothalamus.
●The hypothalamus determines whether hormone levels cycle.
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