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Role of Sex Hormones | Synthesis, Regulation & Function

Hormones are the chemical substances that circulate throughout your body. They are produced and secreted by the glands which play a very vital role in our body functions and daily activities. Different types of hormones affect different glands. Sex hormones form an important and a critical part of our body functions that is generally responsible for regulating the skeletal growths in both the males as well as the females. These hormones affect the internal process of skeletal growth when there is an increase or decrease in the skeletal mass during those periods.

The sex hormones tend to interact with the cytosolic and the specific nuclear receptors such that it can produce masses of genomic effects in an innumerable amount of different vascular cells as present inside the body along with the added non-genomic vascular effects while acting with the specific plasmalemmal receptors.

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Our human body comprises of innumerable assortments of different types and forms of hormones each of which performs different functions, few of which may even be interlinked. Growth hormone and sex hormones are few of the examples of those hormone assortments that functions inside our body and regulates our body functions. Hormones are responsible for transferring the messages in between the organs and the cells.

Hormones are secreted in our endocrine systems by the glands that are present inside the endocrine system. This secretion helps in keeping the hormone levels normal and supports in maintaining our body balance. The body thus keeps its balance and functions normally and effectively. 

Sex Hormones, Sex Hormones

Ageing, the progressive change, and the process of getting older are also associated with hormones. It is affected by the loss of these sex hormones in the human body, be it male or female. Therefore, if one wishes to restore their feelings of well-being, happiness, comfort, longevity, sexual desires and ambitions, sex drive, pleasures, muscle or bone losses, lost energy levels, or any other effects that are associated with aging, then, one needs to replace their male / female hormones that have been lost during the process of aging.

Certainly, there exists several approaches and procedures that may be done to restore these hormones and look more youthful. Few of such hormone supplements include creams, patches and pellets. These approaches would at times help you in ageing slowly and lead an improved satisfied life during your old age.

Sex Hormones, sex, Hormones, causes, problems

Sex Hormones Types

Types and Functions of the major male and female Sex Hormones:

  • Oestrogen: Oestrogen is also called as the female hormone because it is present in higher amounts among the females. Unlike the growth hormone, oestrogen also is also primarily responsible for the growth and development of the body and body functions. Further, oestrogen works to stimulate the growth of fat cells and serves as one of the major element or constituents for reproduction.
  • Progesterone: Progesterone is equivalent to oestrogen, and both are considered to complement each other in the bodily functions. Progesterone antagonizes and upsets the growth patterns in the uterus linings that are driven by oestrogens. It affects the growth.  Further, progesterone is also very vital for the premenstrual cycles where the level of progesterone generally tends to rise in the second part of the menstrual cycle to shrink the premenstrual syndrome. This helps in preparing the uterus for the fertilization process and for the fixing of a fertilized egg to the uterus.

Moreover, progesterone is also very beneficial in supporting a healthy and a successful pregnancy. Any type of imbalance in the ratio of levels of oestrogen to the levels of progesterone points to several problems in your healthy well-being.

  • Testosterone: Unlike the oestrogen, testosterone is known as the male hormone. Testosterone is the most predominant and the major hormone present in men. It helps in the healthy desired growth of muscle mass thereby proving the required strength and stamina. Apart from this it also helps in the growth of bone density, energy boosting, memory growth and an overall healthy well-being. Not only in males, but the availability and presence of testosterone is equally essential in females for a proper balancing. Any deficiency in the levels of testosterone can affect both males as well as the females.
  • Pregnenolone: Pregnenolone is a hormone that is generated from the cholesterol. It is a pioneer of other steroid hormones specifically the progesterone, oestrogen, testosterone and the DHEA. The levels of the pregnenolone tend to deteriorate with your age. Any deficiency in the pregnenolone levels may lead to imbalance health symptoms like mood swings, anxiety, stress, etc.
  • DHEA: DHEA or dehydroepiandrosterone is the hormone that is produced by our body’s adrenal glands. It is believed to be the most abundant steroid hormone present in our body.  It is a pioneer to the oestrogen and testosterone hormones. The level of DHEA generally tends to deteriorate and decline with the age, and thus affecting your body functions which in turn leads to several hormonal problems mood swings, fatigue, bone health, etc.

Sex Hormones: Synthesis

  • Synthesis of the sex hormones is controlled by the production of a hypothalamic gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH).
  • During the process of general circulations, GnRH tends to encourage the production of luteinizing hormone (LH) and the follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) in the pituitary gland.
  • LH further binds itself to the target cells which may again lead to an increase in the extraction of steroidogenic acute regulatory protein (StAR) which promotes cholesterol transfers and initiates steroidogenesis.
  • Androgens, DHEA and androstenedione are released in the adrenal cortex.
  • Testosterone is released in the Leydig cells, lying adjacent to the male testes.
  • The production of pregnenolone is initiated in the Leydig cells of the luteinizing hormone.
  • The synthesis of oestrogen in females helps in controlling the growth and development of sexual characteristics in females.
  • The synthesis of glandular oestrogen takes place in the ovarian cells and the corpus luteum.
  • The luteinizing hormone (LH) stimulates the granulosa cells to release pregnenolone.
  • Pregnenolone then diffuses from these granulosa cells and mediate the process of pregnenolone hormone conversion to androstenedione through DHEA.
  • The process of extra-glandular synthesis facilitates the aromatization of androgens to oestrone.
  • The fat cells convert the androgen to oestrone and thereby increases the serum oestrogens.
  • The bones convert testosterone to form local oestrogen and thereby supports the development of epiphyses.
  • Even though oestrogens are usually responsible for balancing the sexual characteristics in females, however, they are also synthesized at some levels in males.
  • Progestin synthesis also exists. The inventories of hormone synthesis alter menstrual cycles during its production.

Sex Hormones: Regulation

  • The release of GnRH regulates the secretion of few hormones like the luteinizing hormone (LH) and the FSH during the movement and circulation.
  • The luteinizing hormone (LH) regulates the release of testosterone from the related cells and stimulates its production.
  • The testosterone released has a negative effect on the luteinizing hormone (LH) and the hypothalamic GnRH
  • The FSH regulates the stimulation and production of inhibin from the related cells.
  • The released inhibin then again feeds an anterior pituitary in return to produce FSH.
  • The regulation of hormones in females may be considered a bit complicated as compared to male hormones regulation. The reason is mainly that of the effects of various hormones that vary during the stages of menstrual cycle.
  • In males, the hypothalamic gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) leads to the production of LH and FSH next to the anterior pituitary.
  • Feedbacks from the theca cells are regulated by the production of the progestins.
  • Feedbacks from the granulosa cells are regulated by the production of the inhibin.
  • Feedbacks from the corpus luteum are regulated by the production of the progesterone and oestradiol during the menstrual cycle phase.
  • Any higher amount of the production or release of the progesterone and oestrogen takes place due to the corpus luteum. As a result, the release of LH and FSH are inhibited.
  • Further, the levels of few hormones like specifically the LH and the FSH tend to increase to some higher levels and thus a decrease in the levels of oestrogen and the progesterone takes place whereby causing the occurrence of the certain new follicle.
  • The follicle that is in the growing stage starts to release oestrogen in heavy amounts which thereby also affects the release of LH and FSH
  • The sudden increase of LH and the FSH takes place which then prepares for the process of ovulation. This mainly happens due to a certain increase in the production of oestradiol or the new follicle that gets produced to higher levels.

Hormones tend to control the functions of all the organs, and therefore it becomes extremely important to keep our hormonal levels balanced. Hormone imbalances can have several adverse effects on our total body processes. It affects the way our body stores its energy. It controls the levels of fluids, salt and sugar/glucose in our body. Sex hormones influences and affects the health of both men and women and therefore there always exists a need to keep a track your hormone levels and perform regular assessments and routine examinations to keep a balance of its levels last longer. Even a very small variation in the hormonal levels can take you to adverse situations.

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