pituitary gland


Definition of pituitary gland

: a small oval endocrine organ that is attached to the infundibulum of the brain, consists of an epithelial anterior lobe joined by an intermediate part to a posterior lobe of nervous origin, and produces various internal secretions directly or indirectly impinging on most basic body functions

called also hypophysis, pituitary body

— see brain illustration

Examples of pituitary gland in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Some of us have to be the hypothalamus, the pituitary gland, the bile duct. Josh Max, Forbes, 3 Nov. 2021 The hypothalamus sits directly above the pituitary gland at the base of the brain and is hardwired to organs throughout the body via the nervous system, including fat tissue. Gary Taubes, STAT, 16 Sep. 2021 The pituitary gland can stimulate the thyroid to make more hormone through thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH), but that process is slow both to turn on and shut off. Dr. Keith Roach, oregonlive, 31 Aug. 2021 In order to reduce the chance of the horses developing Cushing’s disease, a common pituitary gland problem in older horses, RAD buys them a more expensive low-sugar feed. San Diego Union-Tribune, 22 Aug. 2021 It is secreted by the posterior pituitary gland in response to nerve signals sent from specialized brain sensors which detect subtle changes in water balance. Tamara Hew-butler, CNN, 5 May 2021 The cycles, and lag times, are evident in hormones released by the thyroid, liver, adrenal cortex and gonads, directed by the pituitary gland in the brain. Mark Fischetti, Scientific American, 23 Apr. 2021 In fact, maternal sensitization is possible even if the virgin’s pituitary gland—her hormonal manufacturing center—is surgically removed. Dina Litovsky, Smithsonian Magazine, 22 Apr. 2021 Scans show tumors all over his skull, in the fluid of the lining of his brain and surrounding the pituitary gland. Dana Hunsinger Benbow, The Indianapolis Star, 4 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pituitary gland.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of pituitary gland

1707, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for pituitary gland

Time Traveler

The first known use of pituitary gland was in 1707

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Dictionary Entries Near pituitary gland

pituitary fossa

pituitary gland

pituitary membrane

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Statistics for pituitary gland

Last Updated

7 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Pituitary gland.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pituitary%20gland. Accessed 27 Nov. 2021.

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More Definitions for pituitary gland

pituitary gland

pi·​tu·​i·​tary gland | \ pə-ˈtü-ə-ˌter-ē-, -ˈtyü- \

Kids Definition of pituitary gland

: a gland at the base of the brain that produces several hormones of which one affects growth

pituitary gland


Medical Definition of pituitary gland

: a small oval reddish gray very vascular endocrine organ that is attached to the infundibulum of the brain and occupies the sella turcica, that is present in all craniate vertebrates, that consists essentially of an epithelial anterior lobe derived from a diverticulum of the oral cavity and joined to a posterior lobe of nervous origin by a pars intermedia, and that has the several parts associated with various hormones which directly or indirectly affect most basic bodily functions and include substances exerting a controlling and regulating influence on other endocrine organs, controlling growth and development, or modifying the contraction of smooth muscle, renal function, and reproduction

called also hypophysis, pituitary body

— see adenohypophysis, neurohypophysis

More from Merriam-Webster on pituitary gland

Britannica English: Translation of pituitary gland for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about pituitary gland


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