List of Hormones in Human Body & their Functions

Hormones are the chemical messengers of the body.
They regulate the body physiology based on the signals from brain.
They transfer the signal directly on to the respective organ or system for the changes to happen.
So they are like the messengers carrying message from the brain to the other organs.
They are produced by the secretory cells of specific glands.
These glands are of different types which synthesize and secrete the concerned hormone.
But they do not release them into the blood. Instead the blood flows through these glands and carry away.
So they are termed as endocrine glands.
Most of the hormones are named after the gland from which they are secreted.

These are then carried by blood into target tissues where they show their effect.

They regulate most of the body physiology and functions.

They bring such changes by acting at the level of genetic material or proteList of hormonesin formation machinery of the cell.

These hormones if deficient or if excess can lead to hormonal disorders.

These can have deleterious effect on the health and physiology.

So how many hormones are there in the human body?

Below is the comprehensive list with their functions.

List of Hormones and their Functions in human body

HormoneFunctionEndocrine Gland secreting
Thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH)Stimulates thyroid gland to synthesize T3 & T4 hormonesHypothalamus (HYP)
Corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH)Stimuates cortex of adrenal gland to secreate gluco and mineralo corticoids (HYP)
Growth hormone-releasing hormone (GHRH)Stimulates formation of growth hormone, (HYP)
Growth hormone inhibitory hormone (GHIH) (somatostatin)Inhibits release of growth hormone, TSH, insulin (HYP)
Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) or leutinising hormone releasing hormone.Controls release of FSH, LH (HYP)
Dopamine or prolactin-inhibiting factor (PIF)Inhibits prolactin secretion. (HYP)
Growth hormoneStimulates growth of the bodyAnterior pituitary (AP)
Thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH)Releases T3 & T4 (AP)
Adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH)Stimulates adrenal cortex to produce (AP)
ProlactinStimulates milk formation (AP)
Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH)Stimulates to form sperms in male and Ova in female. (AP)
Luteinizing hormone (LH)Formation of ova in females & production of testosterone (AP)
Antidiuretic hormone (ADH) (also called vasopressin)Limit water expulsion by kidney. It also constricts blood vessels and rise blood pressurePosterior pituitary
Thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3)Regulates body metabolism and heatThyroid
CalcitoninReduces blood calcium. by enhanced deposition in bone, decrease in intestinal absorption and expulsion by kidney.Thyroid
CortisolIncreases blood sugar levels and supress immune systemAdrenal cortex
Aldosterone Adrenal cortex
Norepinephrine, epinephrineAdrenal medulla
Insulin (β cells)Helps absorb glucose from blood to tissue and also release from liverPancreas
Glucagon (α cells)Helps absorb glucose into liver to form glyocgenPancreas
Parathyroid hormone (PTHParathyroid
TestosteroneBuilds muscles, give muscline character and also stimulate formation of spermsTestes
EstrogensDevelopment of female reproductive system.Ovaries & Placenta
ProgesteroneMenstruation, Aids zygote implantation, Lactation & sexual driveOvaries & Placenta
Human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG)Placenta
Human somatomammotropinPlacenta
ReninHelps maintain blood volume and there by blood pressureKidney
1,25-DihydroxycholecalciferolRises Blood calcium levelskidney/nephron
ErythropoietinStimulates formation of red blood cells.Kidney
Atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP)balance of water, sodium, potassium and fat in bodyHeart muscle
GastrinTo secrete gastric juiceStomach
SecretinWater levels and water balance in bodySmall intestine/duodenum
Cholecystokinin (CCK)Stimulates fat and protein digestion in intestine.
LeptinRegulates energy balance. Inhibits hunger if neededadipose cells
GhrelinStimulates hungerGastro intestine
From the above list, the ones secreted by hypothalamus, anterior and posterior pituitary are formed in brain.
While rest are formed outside the brain. Once released they are carried on by blood to different regions.
The hormones on reaching the corresponding regions elicit their response.
It is quite interesting to see that the ones released from they also brain regulate the secretion of other hormones.
So it indicates that their secretion is controlled by brain and indirectly all the other hormones too. Thus the whole body physiology seems to be under the control of brain.
Any emotional disturbance to the brain can lead to alteration in secretion of these hormones. Thus we can see that during emotional changes we experience hormonal imbalance too.
For a comprehensive understanding of origin of hormones and their function in the body refer to the article TYPES OF GLANDS & THEIR FUNCTION.


  1. stephanie

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