The Thyroid

  • Kenneth A. Woeber
  • Lewis E. Braverman


The bulk of research activity during the past year has been concerned with attempts to define some of the factors that regulate the secretion of thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH). Since a reliable radioimmunoassay for measuring TRH in plasma has not yet been developed, effects of various factors on TRH secretion have been inferred from changes in the concentration of thyrotropin (TSH) in plasma. This approach may not be a disadvantage, however. Since TRH is so widespread throughout the brain, changes in plasma concentration need not reflect alterations in the hypothalamic elaboration of this peptide. On the other hand, alterations in TRH that are relevant to TSH secretion should be reflected in alterations in plasma TSH concentration. That endogenous TRH has a role in the regulation of TSH secretion has in the past been inferred from the effects of administered exogenous TRH. Two groups of investigators1–3 have now provided direct evidence to support such a role by observing the effects on serum TSH concentrations in the rat of administering anti-TRH antiserum. In normal rats, administration of anti-TRH antiserum was followed by depression of basal serum TSH concentration and by suppression of the cold-induced surge of TSH secretion. In untreated hypothyroid rats, the anti-TRH antiserum produced a modest decrease in basal serum TSH concentration, but in triiodothyronine (T3)-treated thyroidectomized animals, it did not prevent the rise in serum TSH concentration that occurred when T3 was withdrawn.


Thyroid Hormone Thyroid Nodule Thyroid Stimulate Hormone Antithyroid Drug Serum Thyroid Stimulate Hormone 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kenneth A. Woeber
    • 1
  • Lewis E. Braverman
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Medicine, Mt. Zion Hospital and Medical CenterUniversity of California Medical SchoolSan FranciscoUSA
  2. 2.Department of MedicineUniversity of Massachusetts Medical SchoolWorcesterUSA

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