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Chapter 32 - Chemical Control of the Animal Body: Endocrine System

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I.

What are the characteristics of animal hormones?


A.

Endocrine system - consists of hormones and the


glands and cells that secrete/receive them

B.

Hormones - chemicals that are secreted by


specialized cells and transported in the bloodstream
to target cells
1.

Peptide hormones a)

Synthesized from multiple amino acids

b)

Most animal hormones are composed of


chains of peptides

2.

Amino-acid derivatives a)

Synthesized from single amino acids (simple


molecules from single amino acids)

b)

Ex: tyrosine forms the basis for epinephrine


and norepinephrine

3.

Steroid hormones (steroids) a)

Synthesized from cholesterol (complex rings of


carbon and hydrogen atoms)

b)

Secreted by ovaries, placenta, testes and


adrenal cortex

4.

Prostaglandins a)

Synthesized from fatty acids (two fatty acid


chains attached to a five-carbon ring)

b)

Produced by nearly every cell instead of


specialized cells in endocrine glands

c)

Local effect (dont travel through circulatory


system)

C.

Hormones function by binding to specific receptors


on target cells
1.

Target cells have receptors for particular hormones found on the plasma membrane and
inside the cell (normally in nucleus)

D.

Some hormones bind to surface receptors


1.

Peptide and amino acid-based hormones are water soluble and not lipid soluble > cant pass
through plasma membrane and bind to surface protein receptors instead

2.

Second messenger - translates message from first messenger (hormone) and carries out its
function in the cell
a)

Hormone binds to receptor > second membrane protein (G protein) is activated > G protein
activates membrane enzyme, adenylate cyclase, using energy from GTP > adenylate
cyclase catalyzes the production of cAMP from ATP > cAMP activates specific enzymes in
the cell (protein kinase), beginning a phosphorylation cascade > signal amplified > the
hormones specific action/response is initiated

E.

Other hormones bind to intracellular receptors


1.

Steroid hormones are lipid soluble > can pass through membrane and bind to protein
receptors (usually in nucleus)

2.

Receptor-hormone complex binds to DNA > genes stimulated to transcribe mRNA > mRNA
goes to cytoplasm and directs the synthesis of proteins (can be inhibitory/stimulating)

3.

Steroids and thyroid hormones stimulate gene expression > they take a longer time to exert
their full effect than peptide hormones that bind to surface proteins

F.

Hormones are regulated by feedback mechanisms


1.

Secretion of a hormone stimulates a response in target cells that inhibits further secretion of
the hormone

How peptide or amino acid derived hormones influence target cells

How many steroid hormones influence target cells

II.

What are the structures and functions of the mammalian endocrine system?
A.

Exocrine glands - secrete substances outside body or into body cavity/organ via duct

B.

Endocrine glands - secrete substances into bloodstream (ductless) by diffusion into capillary bed
from the surrounding extracellular fluid

C.

The hypothalamus controls the secretions of the pituitary gland


1.

Hypothalamus - connection between nervous system and endocrine system


a)

Part of the brain that contains neurosecretory cells (specialized nerve cells that
synthesize/store/release peptide hormones)

b)

Secretes hormones called releasing factors that control the secretions of the anterior
pituitary gland (can be either releasing/inhibitory hormones)

c)

Creates and stores peptide hormones, ADH and oxytocin, for release via posterior
pituitary gland

2.

Pituitary gland - pea-sized gland that dangles from the hypothalamus, master gland that
controls the other glands of the endocrine system (master gland)

D.

a)

Anterior pituitary - true endocrine gland with cells enmeshed in capillary bed

b)

Posterior pituitary - outgrowth of the hypothalamus

The anterior pituitary gland produces and releases a variety of hormones


1.

Thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) - stimulates thyroid to release thyroxine

2.

Growth hormone (GH) - controls growth by causing bones to increase in size;


undersecretion=dwarfism, oversecretion= gigantism

3.

Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) - stimulates the production of eggs in the ovaries of


females and sperm in males

4.

Luteinizing hormone (LH) - controls production of sex hormone in males and females, controls
the release of eggs in females

5.

Prolactin - stimulates milk production and breast development in females

6.

Adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) - stimulates production and release of steroid hormones


from adrenal cortex, used in treatments of arthritis, asthma, and allergies

E.

7.

Endorphins - block pain sense by binding to receptors in the brain

8.

Melanocyte-stimulating hormone (MSH) - stimulates synthesis of melanin (skin pigment)

The posterior pituitary releases hormones produced by cells in the hypothalamus


1.

Posterior pituitary contains endings of neurosecretory cells that are enmeshed in a capillaries

2.

Two peptide hormones are synthesized in hypothalamus and released in posterior pituitary
a)

Antidiuretic hormone (ADH) or vasopressin - causes collecting ducts of nephrons to be


more permeable to water so more reabsorption and less excretion of water occurs, also
constricts blood vessels (increases blood pressure); inhibited by alcohol

b)

Oxytocin - stimulates maternal behaviors and muscle contraction of smooth muscles of


the uterus during childbirth and of the breasts during lactation (breastfeeding) in females;
ejaculation in males

F.

The thyroid and parathyroid glands affect metabolism and calcium levels
1.

Thyroid gland - located in the front of neck just below the larynx (voice box) and in front of the
trachea; produces thyroxine and calcitonin
a)

Thyroxine - iodine-containing modified amino acid derivative; raises metabolic rate of cells
(1)

Regulates the rate of fat, protein and carbohydrate metabolism & cellular respiration

(2)

Connected to regulating body temperature and response to stress (ex: in the cold,
more thyroxine produced > metabolic rate increases > energy released as heat)

(3)

Undersecretion=cretinism - mental retardation and dwarfism

(4)

Oversecretion - precocious development

(5)

Levels in bloodstream regulated by negative feedback loop - high thyroxine levels in


blood > TSH and releasing hormone are inhibited > thyroxine inhibited

(6)

Iodine deficiency > reduced thyroxine production > triggers feedback mechanism >
excessive growth of thyroid gland > enlarged thyroid gland/ goiter

b)

Calcitonin - lowers blood calcium by causing bones to reabsorb calcium

2.

Parathyroid glands - four small disks behind the thyroid that secrete parathormone
a)

Parathormone increases calcium by causing the release of calcium from bones (opposite
effect to calcitonin)

b)

Parathormone also controls metabolism of calcium (increasing calcium absorption by


intestines and calcium reabsorption by kidneys)

c)
3.

Parathormone is important for blood clotting, nerve function, and muscle contractions

The adrenal glands have two parts that secrete different hormones
a)

Adrenal glands - found over the kidneys, two glands in one

b)

Adrenal medulla - center of each gland and are controlled by sympathetic nervous system
(1)

Epinephrine (adrenalin) - stimulates elevation of blood glucose and fight or flight


reactions

(2)

Norepinephrine (noradrenaline) - stimulates reactions similar to those produced by


epinephrine, but causes more vasoconstriction and is less effective in conversion of
glycogen into glucose

(3)
c)

Epinephrine and norepinephrine are amino acid derivatives

Adrenal cortex - outer layer of adrenal glands


(1)

Glucocorticoids (corticosterone, cortisol, cortisone, etc) - control glucose metabolism


by stimulating formation of carbohydrates from protein ( thus elevating glycogen
stores & maintaining normal blood sugar); release is stimulated by ACTH from anterior
pituitary

(2)

Mineralocorticoids (aldosterone, deoxycorticosterone, etc) - raises blood sodium by


causing kidneys and sweat glands to retain sodium; stimulates kidney tubules to
reabsorb more water/sodium and less potassium

(3)
4.

Testosterone

The pancreas is both an exocrine gland and endocrine gland


a)

Exocrine portion - synthesizes digestive secretions and releases them into pancreatic duct
to the small intestine

b)

Endocrine portion - contains cell clusters called islet cells (or islets of langerhans) that
produce peptide hormones
(1)

Alpha cells secrete glucagon; beta cells secrete insulin

(2)

Insulin - increases cell uptake of glucose to either metabolize it for energy or convert it
to glycogen/fat, especially in liver (reduces blood glucose)

(3)

Glucagon - converts glycogen to glucose, causes liver to release glucose into the
blood (increases blood glucose); also promotes lipid breakdown

(4)
5.

Diabetes mellitus - blood glucose is high

The sex organs (gonads/reproductive glands) secrete steroid hormones


a)

Hypothalamus secretes releasing hormones > anterior pituitary secretes higher levels of
FSH and LH > FSH and LH stimulate testes secrete androgens (testosterone) and ovaries
secrete estrogen and progesterone

b)

Testosterone - male hormone; responsible for secondary sex characteristics in males and
regulates the development of sperm

c)

Estrogen - female hormone; responsible for secondary sex characteristics in females

d)

Progesterone - female hormone; regulates the menstrual cycle (high levels=no


menstruation)

6.

Many types of cells produce prostaglandins

7.

Other endocrine glands include the pineal gland, thymus, kidneys, heart and digestive tract
a)

Pineal gland - between hemispheres of the brain


(1)

Melatonin - amino acid derivative that influences sleep-wake cycles (biological clock)
and depression

b)

Thymus - in center of the chest


(1)

Thymosin - stimulates T cell development

(2)

Also produces white blood cells

c)

Kidney
(1)

Erythropoietin - produced in response to low blood oxygen; stimulates red blood cell
production

(2)

Renin - produced in response to low blood pressure; enzyme that catalyzes the
production of angiotensin (which raises blood pressure by constricting arterioles and
stimulating the release of aldosterone to increase blood volume)

d)

Heart
(1)

Atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) - released by atria in response to increase blood


volume; reduces blood volume by reducing the release of ADH and aldosterone

e)

Stomach and small intestine produce peptide hormones that regulate digestion

(gastrin,

secretin, and cholecystokinin)


f)

Fat cells
(1)

8.

Leptin - role in appetite (high levels=less appetite)

Disorders of the endocrine system


a)

Diabetes mellitus - disorder characterized by an insulin deficiency (hypoglycemia) which


results in an elevated blood sugar level

b)

Diabetes insipidus - rare disease caused by deficiency of ADH, symptoms: thirst and
excretion of large quantities of urine, 4 to 10 liters a day

c)

Goiter - enlargement of thyroid gland, usually resulting from the glands inability to make
thyroxine, associated with iodine deficiency

d)

Diabetic shock - hypersecretion of insulin, causing glucose levels in blood to drop; leads to
death, unconsciousness, or convulsions