Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Objective 5 & 12: Hypothalamus and hypothalamus- pituitary complex

Objective 5: Explain why the hypothalamus is classified as an endocrine gland
Objective 12: Name hypothalamus- pituitary complex hormones and give their functions

Is the hypothalamus an endocrine gland? It seems to be an ongoing debate even to this day. A true endocrine gland is a ductless gland that releases hormones into surrounding tissue fluid and has a rich vascular and lymphatic drainage to recieve the hormones. But the hypothalamus is an amazing gland. It not only performs neural functions and controls the endocrine system, but it also produces and releases hormones. Producing and releasing hormones is the major factor in deciding whether or not the gland is an endocrine gland, and the hypothalamus has that. I agree when it is said that the hypothalamus gland is an endocrine gland.

I stolled across this photo, which was very helpful to me when I was trying to understand the hypothalamus-pituitary complex and the hormones that this complex secretes. This photo shows the connections of the hypothalamus to the pituitary, and some of the targets of the pituitary hormones. It summerizes the hypothalamus- pituitary complex very well, and there wasn't alot of confusing extra information.

These charts on pages 530-531 in our textbook were a little more in depth in describing the hormones of the hypothalamus- pituitary complex and the effects of the hormones. This was very beneficial because it not only gave me the name of the hormones involved in this complex, but it gave me the regulation of release, target organs and effects, and the effects of hyposecretion and hypersecretion. So this chart provided me with more useful information, and the way it was organized helped me retain the information better.

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