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June 23, 1975


JAMA. 1975;232(12):1218. doi:10.1001/jama.1975.03250120009006

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In Reply.  It will have become evident that the author of the editorial in question is not a card-carrying somatostatinist. Nevertheless, he is, and was, aware that what this polypeptide does, is to inhibit hypothalamic releasing factors. In the title of the editorial, and in most of the text, however, the term "hormone" was chosen, perhaps unwisely, to escape such awkward phrases as "action of growth-hormone-release inhibiting hormone" (copied verbatim) for the many readers who may not have been familiar with the literature. Thus, the end result of somatostatin was used rather than its prior effect. The sin seems to have been to use "inhibit" instead of "suppress"—a rather fine but apparently necessary distinction.It is difficult to understand the furor over Koerker's Oct 31, 1974, report as given in the editorial. Granted, publication is best. But is a verbal account of a scientific finding, delivered before a scientific audience by