Anatomy of the Adrenal Cortex

The mammalian adrenal cortex is divided into three concentric zones: the zona glomerulosa, zona fascicu-lata, and zona reticularis. The zona glomerulosa produces hormones, such as aldosterone, that are responsi ble for regulating salt and water metabolism; the zona fasciculata produces glucocorticoids; and the zona reticularis produces adrenal androgens. While secretion by the two inner zones is controlled by pituitary adreno-corticotropic hormone (corticotrophin, ACTH), aldos-terone produced by the zona glomerulosa is principally controlled by the renin-angiotensin system. Desoxy-corticosterone, a mineralocorticoid produced in the zona fasciculata, is under corticotrophin control.

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