anterior pituitary

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The front part or lobe of the pituitary gland that, in response to hormones from the hypothalamus, secretes trophic hormones controlling most of the other endocrine glands in the body, and that also acts directly on somatic cells by secreting growth hormone, affecting bodily growth and metabolism, and melanocyte-stimulating hormone, affecting skin and other pigmentation. Also called the adenohypophysis. See adrenocorticotrophic hormone (ACTH), beta-endorphin, beta-lipotropin, follicle-stimulating hormone, luteinizing hormone, prolactin, thyroid-stimulating hormone. Compare posterior pituitary.

Subjects: Psychology.

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