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December 1972

Different Responses to Two Hypothalamic Hormones in Acromegalics

Author Affiliations

New Orleans; Mexico, DF; Rochester, NY

From the Endocrinology Section of the Medical Service (Dr. Kastin) and endocrine and polypeptide laboratories (Dr. Schally), Veterans Administration Hospital, and Department of Medicine, Tulane University School of Medicine (Drs. Kastin and Schally), New Orleans; the Endocrinology Service, Hospital General del Centro Medico Nacional, Instituto Mexicano del Serguro Social, Mexico, DF (Dr. Gonzalez-Barcena); and the Department of Medicine, University of Rochester School of Medicine, Rochester, NY (Dr. Schalch and Ms. Lee).

Arch Intern Med. 1972;130(6):923-927. doi:10.1001/archinte.1972.03650060113021

It is now well established that hypothalamic hormones stimulate the release of all the known hormones from the anterior pituitary gland except prolactin which is primarily under an inhibitory influence.1 The hypothalamus also inhibits the release of melanocyte-stimulating hormone (MSH) from the intermediate lobe of the pituitary.2,3 The structure and synthesis of thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH) was recently announced,4,5 and it is probable that this will be accomplished soon for other hypothalamic hormones. When available, these materials should be of value both for diagnosis and therapy.

The hypothalamic hormones will theoretically provide a means of differentiating primary hypothalamic from pituitary disorders, a distinction which until now has been difficult or impossible to make. It would be expected that release of pituitary hormones by the stimulatory hypothalamic hormones would only occur when sufficient pituitary reserve remained.

Clinical tests have already been performed with synthetic TRH6-11 and