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Human Body

45 44 EndocrInology hormonal biorhythms Hormones dictate what phase body systems are in, from growth and metabolism to immunity and reproduction. They do this by switching influential processes on and off in distant cells. Seven major endocrine glands send hormones, via the blood, to all cells. Any given hormone has certain target cells, that respond to it. Some, like thyroxin and insulin, target most cell types, in typevariable ways. A few, like growth hormone and its opposite cortisol, target all cells. But most endocrine business is selfregulation, via control hormones which only target cells in other glands. The brain senses and governs the system in the hypothalamus, whose interplay with the peasized pituitary, on its stalk, releases control hormones to the lower glands, which make real hormones. Control loops time phases like the morning rush of cortisol, and the monthly surge and ebb of female sex hormones. Hormones start phases by switching on master genes that activate groups of other genes, often for enzymes that perform a related set of processes. Top of the pile, deep in the midbrain, is the mysterious pineal, primal neuroendocrine uberface. It times major phase changes, like night and day, seasons, puberty, menopause, and maybe death. Indians have said for years that the simplest way to describe anyones current state of health is as the activity and interplay of the seven major chakras that sit up and down the midline p.44. Neuroendocrine overlap is widespread, and its hard to tell whats a hormone see paracrine. The adrenal medulla is ectodermal p.18, so is specialized nerve, which fits with that adrenaline feeling.
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