Neuropharmacological assessment of growth hormone secretion
The biochemical diagnosis of individuals who are either deficient in growth hormone (GH) or who have alterations in the normal pattern of GH secretion is difficult. The uncertainty surrounding diagnosis reflects the lack of a thorough understanding of the physiology of GH secretion
and of the hypothalamic hormones involved. At least three hormones are implicated: GH‐releasing hormone (GHRH), somatostatin and the endogenous ligand of the GH secretagogue receptor, although the role that each plays in the release of GH is not clear from the available experimental
evidence. In such a situation, most of the dynamic tests of GH secretory capacity in humans need to undergo a ‘trial and error’ process before being validated. The search for the ‘gold standard’ test of GH secretion is ongoing, and the combination of GHRH plus GH secretagogues
will probably play an important role in future clinical diagnosis. □ Growth hormone‐releasing hormone, somatostatin, growth hormone secretagogue, growth hormone‐releasing peptide‐6
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Document Type: Review Article
Departments of Physiology, Complejo Hospitalario de Santiago, Santiago de Compostela University, Santiago de Compostela, Spain.
Division of Endocrinology, Hospital Virgen del Rocio, Sevilla, Spain.
Institute of Endocrinology, University Clinical Center, Belgrade, Yugoslavia
Publication date: 01 November 1997