By Richard Brown

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A neuromodulator can be a true hormone, neurohormone, parahormone or other type of chemical messenger. Steroid hormones such as estrogen or testosterone act as neuromodulators, as do peptide hormones such as cholecystokinin. Finally, non-hormone peptides such as substance P and bombesin also act as neuromodulators. The concept of neuromodulation has become central to our understanding of the action of the neuroendocrine system (Kaczamarek and Levitan, 1987). 3 NEUROPEPTIDES Neuropeptides are hormone or non-hormone peptides that act as neuromodulators.

Quirion, R. (1988). Atrial natriuretic factors and the brain: an update. Trends in Neurosciences, 11, 58-62. Reiter, R. J. (1983). The pineal gland: an intermediary between the environment and the endocrine system. Psychoneuroendocrinology, 8, 31-40. Starling, E. H. (1905). The chemical correlation of the functions of the body. Lecture 1. Lancet, 2, 339-341. Turner, C. D. and Bagnara, J. T. (1976). General Endocrinology, 6th edn. Philadelphia: Saunders. 1). Secretion of the hormones of the pituitary gland is regulated by the hypothalamus and it is through the hypothalamic-pituitary connection that external and internal stimuli can influence the release of the pituitary hormones, thus producing the neural-endocrine interaction.

1983). Mammalian Neuroendocrinology. New York: Oxford University Press. 16 CHEMICAL MESSENGERS Hadley, M. E. (1992). Endocrinology, 3rd edn. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall. Martin, C. R. (1985). Endocrine Physiology. Oxford: Oxford University Press. 1 What is the difference between a prohormone and a phytohormone? 2 What is the difference between a neurohormone and a neurotransmitter? 3 What is a prohormone? 4 Which hormone could be considered a prohormone for estrogen? 5 What is the difference between a 'true' hormone and a 'pheromone'?

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