Cells of the anterior pituitary
|Title||Cells of the anterior pituitary|
|Author(s)||C. M. Yeung, Catherine B. Chan, P. S. Leung, C. H. Cheng|
|Journal||The International Journal of Biochemistry & Cell Biology|
|Abstract||The anterior pituitary is made up of a number of cell types that are essential for such physiological processes as growth, development, homeostasis, metabolism, and reproduction. These include the hormonal cells corticotropes, thyrotropes, gonadotropes, somatotropes, lactotropes and a small population of mammosomatotropes, together with a non-hormonal cell type called the folliculo-stellate cells. The anterior pituitary hormonal cells are highly differentiated and are committed very early on during embryonic development. Their development is tightly regulated by both extrinsic signals as well as by endogenous gene expression. Many transcription factors that shape the development and functions of the anterior pituitary cells have been identified. Even after differentiation, pituitary cells continue to undergo mitosis and this process could be augmented under certain conditions in adulthood. Some anterior pituitary cells are multifunctional and exhibit mixed phenotypes. Pituitary tumors, which are mostly monoclonal in nature, are rather common. The molecular pathogenesis of pituitary tumorigenesis involves complex and diverse mechanisms. Aberrant intra- and extra-pituitary factors are involved. Mutations of some genes specific to pituitary tumors also play a role.|
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