Posterior pituitary

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Posterior pituitary
Pituitary gland.png
Pituitary gland. Posterior pituitary is in blue. Pars nervosa and infundibular stalk are not labeled, but pars nervosa is at bottom and infundibular stalk is at top.)
Gray1181.png
Median sagittal through the hypophysis of an adult monkey. (Posterior lobe labeled at bottom right.)
Gray's subject #275 1275
Artery inferior hypophyseal artery
Vein hypophyseal vein
Precursor Neural tube (downward-growth of the diencephalon)[1]
MeSH Pituitary+Gland,+Posterior
Dorlands/Elsevier n_07/12569241

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The posterior pituitary (or neurohypophysis) comprises the posterior lobe of the pituitary gland and is part of the endocrine system.

Anatomy

The Posterior Pituitary Gland consists mainly of neuronal projections (axons) extending from the supraoptic and paraventricular nuclei of the hypothalamus that secrete peptide hormones into the capillaries of the hypophyseal circulation.

The neurohypophysis also contains a specialised type of astrocytic glial cell - "pituicytes".

Despite its name, the posterior pituitary gland is not a gland, per se; rather, it is largely a collection of axonal projections from the hypothalamus that terminate behind the anterior pituitary gland.

Classification of the posterior pituitary varies, but most sources include the three regions below:

Region Description
pars nervosa, or neural lobe, or posterior lobe[2] This region consistutes the majority of the posterior pituitary, and is sometimes (incorrectly) considered synonymous with it. Notable features include Herring bodies and pituicytes. [3]
infundibular stalk Also known as the "infundibulum" or "pituitary stalk". The term "hypothalamic-hypophyseal tract" is a near-synonym, describing the connection rather than the structure.
median eminence This is only occasionally included as part of the posterior pituitary.[4] Other sources specifically exclude it from the pituitary.[5]

A few sources include the pars intermedia as part of the posterior lobe, but this is a minority view.

Major hormones secreted

Hormones known classically as posterior pituitary hormones are synthesized by the hypothalamus. They are then stored and secreted by the posterior pituitary into the bloodstream.

Hormone Other names Symbol(s) Target Effect Source
Oxytocin - - Uterus, mammary glands Uterine contractions; lactation paraventricular nuclei
Vasopressin Arginine vasopressin, argipressin, antidiuretic hormone AVP, ADH Kidneys or Arterioles Stimulates water retention; raises blood pressure by contracting arterioles supraoptic

Role in disease

Insufficient secretion of vasopressin is central diabetes insipidus, in which the body loses the capacity to concentrate urine. Affected individuals excrete as much as 20 L of dilute urine per day.

Oversecretion of vasopressin causes the syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone.

References

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| group5 = Clinical Trials Involving Posterior pituitary | list5 = Ongoing Trials on Posterior pituitary at Clinical Trials.govTrial results on Posterior pituitaryClinical Trials on Posterior pituitary at Google


| group6 = Guidelines / Policies / Government Resources (FDA/CDC) Regarding Posterior pituitary | list6 = US National Guidelines Clearinghouse on Posterior pituitaryNICE Guidance on Posterior pituitaryNHS PRODIGY GuidanceFDA on Posterior pituitaryCDC on Posterior pituitary


| group7 = Textbook Information on Posterior pituitary | list7 = Books and Textbook Information on Posterior pituitary


| group8 = Pharmacology Resources on Posterior pituitary | list8 = AND (Dose)}} Dosing of Posterior pituitaryAND (drug interactions)}} Drug interactions with Posterior pituitaryAND (side effects)}} Side effects of Posterior pituitaryAND (Allergy)}} Allergic reactions to Posterior pituitaryAND (overdose)}} Overdose information on Posterior pituitaryAND (carcinogenicity)}} Carcinogenicity information on Posterior pituitaryAND (pregnancy)}} Posterior pituitary in pregnancyAND (pharmacokinetics)}} Pharmacokinetics of Posterior pituitary


| group9 = Genetics, Pharmacogenomics, and Proteinomics of Posterior pituitary | list9 = AND (pharmacogenomics)}} Genetics of Posterior pituitaryAND (pharmacogenomics)}} Pharmacogenomics of Posterior pituitaryAND (proteomics)}} Proteomics of Posterior pituitary


| group10 = Newstories on Posterior pituitary | list10 = Posterior pituitary in the newsBe alerted to news on Posterior pituitaryNews trends on Posterior pituitary


| group11 = Commentary on Posterior pituitary | list11 = Blogs on Posterior pituitary

| group12 = Patient Resources on Posterior pituitary | list12 = Patient resources on Posterior pituitaryDiscussion groups on Posterior pituitaryPatient Handouts on Posterior pituitaryDirections to Hospitals Treating Posterior pituitaryRisk calculators and risk factors for Posterior pituitary


| group13 = Healthcare Provider Resources on Posterior pituitary | list13 = Symptoms of Posterior pituitaryCauses & Risk Factors for Posterior pituitaryDiagnostic studies for Posterior pituitaryTreatment of Posterior pituitary

| group14 = Continuing Medical Education (CME) Programs on Posterior pituitary | list14 = CME Programs on Posterior pituitary

| group15 = International Resources on Posterior pituitary | list15 = Posterior pituitary en EspanolPosterior pituitary en Francais

| group16 = Business Resources on Posterior pituitary | list16 = Posterior pituitary in the MarketplacePatents on Posterior pituitary

| group17 = Informatics Resources on Posterior pituitary | list17 = List of terms related to Posterior pituitary


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