Home Discussion Forum Which endocrine glands are often called the master control conter?

Which endocrine glands are often called the master control conter?

a.Pineal and thymus
b.Hypothalamus and pituitary
c.Thyroid and parathyroids
d.Adrenal cortex and adrenal medulla
e.Pancreas and gonads


  1. Correct Answer is B.
    A: Pineal controls circadian rhythms while thymus is a primary lymphatic structure that is the site of T-lymphocyte development and involutes at puberty
    B. Hypothalamus is considered the master gland and secretes either releasing hormones to anterior pituitary or sends vasopressin or oxytocin down to the posterior pituitary where it is stored and later released; in the anterior pituitary, the releasing hormones act on certain anterior pituocytes that will secrete trophic hormones, which will then be sent and act on target organs to secrete their own hormones to influence a specific bodily function (e.g. Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal Axis: CRH (Hypothalamus)–> ACTH (Anterior Pituitary) –> Cortisol (Zona Fasciulata of Adrenal Cortex) and that influences the stress response)
    C. Thyroid gland: secretes T3 and T4 hormones to modulate metabolism and also has parafollicular cells that secrete calcitonin to lower plasma calcium; parathyroid: secretes PTH to increase plasma calcium levels
    D. Adrenal cortex: secretes steroids (mineralocorticoids, glucorticoids, sex hormones) that influence fluid/electrolyte balance, stress response, and gonadal function/sex characteristics respectively; Adrenal medulla: an extension of autonomic nervous system and secretes catecholamines, primarily epinephrine and norepinephrine
    E. Pancreas: secretes exocrine enzymes to aid in the digestion of food while also having an endocrine function to regulate plasma glucose levels; gonads: responsible for sex function

  2. B
    the hypothalamus is kind of like the big boss that secretes releasing hormones. some of these go to the pituitary, the 2nd in command, and it secretes stimulating hormones that are sent to the end glands (thyroid, adrenal, etc). the end glands produce the hormones that are sent to the target cells.


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