cortisol

(redirected from 17ß-hydroxycorticosterone)
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cortisol

(kôr`tĭsôl') or

hydrocortisone,

steroid hormonehormone,
secretory substance carried from one gland or organ of the body via the bloodstream to more or less specific tissues, where it exerts some influence upon the metabolism of the target tissue.
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 that in humans is the major circulating hormone of the cortex, or outer layer, of the adrenal glandadrenal gland
or suprarenal gland
, endocrine gland (see endocrine system) about 2 in. (5.1 cm) long situated atop each kidney. The outer yellowish layer (cortex) of the adrenal gland secretes about 30 steroid hormones, the most important of which are aldosterone and
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. Like cortisonecortisone
, steroid hormone whose main physiological effect is on carbohydrate metabolism. It is synthesized from cholesterol in the outer layer, or cortex, of the adrenal gland under the stimulation of adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH).
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, cortisol is classed as a glucocorticoid; it stimulates liver glycogen formation while it decreases the rate of glucose utilization in body cells. A main effect of cortisol is to reduce the reserves of protein in all body cells except cells of the liver and gastrointestinal tract. It also makes fatty acids available for metabolic use. Cortisol is synthesized and secreted by the adrenal cortex in response to the stimulating substance adrenocorticotropic hormoneadrenocorticotropic hormone
, polypeptide hormone secreted by the anterior pituitary gland. Its chief function is to stimulate the cortex of the adrenal gland to secrete adrenocortical steroids, chief among them cortisone.
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 (ACTH). In turn, cortisol is the major regulator of ACTH production in the pituitary gland; it acts by negative feedback inhibition, i.e., a rise in the level of cortisol in the blood inhibits ACTH secretion by the pituitary. Cortisol, usually referred to as hydrocortisonehydrocortisone
, another name for the steroid hormone cortisol, more especially used to refer to preparations of this hormone used medicinally. Hydrocortisone, introduced in 1952, is more potent than cortisone with respect to medicinal metabolic and anti-inflammatory effects.
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 when used medicinally, is more potent than cortisone with respect to metabolic and anti-inflammatory effects. See also corticosteroid drugcorticosteroid drug
, any one of several synthetic or naturally occurring substances with the general chemical structure of steroids. They are used therapeutically to mimic or augment the effects of the naturally occurring corticosteroids, which are produced in the cortex of the
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; steroidssteroids,
class of lipids having a particular molecular ring structure called the cyclopentanoperhydro-phenanthrene ring system. Steroids differ from one another in the structure of various side chains and additional rings. Steroids are common in both plants and animals.
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.

cortisol

[′kȯrd·ə‚sȯl]
(biochemistry)