Dictionary > Corticosteroid

Corticosteroid

Definition
noun, plural: corticosteroids
A steroid hormone produced by the adrenal cortex, e.g. glucocorticoids and mineralocorticoids
Supplement
A corticosteroid is one of the major steroid hormones. Other steroid hormones include sex steroids and anabolic steroids.
Corticosteroids belong to a group of steroid hormones that are produced naturally in the adrenal cortex by steroidogenesis in response to the release of adrenocorticotrophin or adrenocorticotropic hormone from the pituitary gland.
Corticosteroids may be classified into groups based on their predominant biological activity. The major groups of corticosteroids are glucocorticoids and mineralocorticoids. Glucocorticoids have effects on carbohydrate, fat, and protein metabolism. Examples are cortisol and cortisone. Mineralocorticoids affect the regulation of electrolyte and water balance. Example is aldosterone. Some corticosteroids, though, demonstrate both types of activity in varying degrees.
Corticosteroids may also be produced synthetically. Examples of synthetic corticosteroids are prednisone, prednisolone, methylprednisolone, and dexamethasone. They are used in the treatment of certain cases of leukemia. They are also administered to patients to suppress graft rejection and graft-versus-host disease after bone marrow transplant.
They may also be used clinically for hormonal replacement therapy, for suppression of ACTH secretion by the anterior pituitary, as antineoplastic, anti-allergic and anti-inflammatory agents, and to suppress the immune response. Thus, they may also cause adverse effects such as increased risk of infection.
Synonym(s):

  • adrenocortical hormone
  • corticoid

See also:

  • steroid hormone
  • mineralocorticoid
  • glucocorticoid
  • Related term(s):


    You will also like...

    Chemical composition of the body
    Chemical Composition of the Body

    The body is comprised of different elements with hydrogen, oxygen, carbon, and nitrogen as the major four. This tutorial..

    "Cronopio dentiacutus", a prehistoric mammal (an illustration)
    Mammalian Ancestors

    Mammals are a diverse group of organisms, where most of them develop their offspring within the uterus of the mother. Ov..

    Pollution in Freshwater Ecosystems
    Pollution in Freshwater Ecosystems

    There are many environmental factors that arise due to the usage of water in one way or another and for every action tha..

    Kidneys
    Kidneys and Regulation of Water and Inorganic Ions

    The kidneys are responsible for the regulation of water and inorganic ions. Read this tutorial to learn about the differ..

    Growth and Plant Hormones
    Growth and Plant Hormones

    Plants, like animals, produce hormones to regulate plant activities, including growth. They need these hormones to respo..

    Crossing Over and Genetic Diversity
    Inheritance and Probability

    Gregor Mendel, an Austrian monk, is most famous in this field for his study of the phenotype of pea plants, including ..