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Trends Endocrinol Metab. 2004 Apr;15(3):110-5.

An overview of the endocrinology of skeletal muscle.

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  • 1University of Texas Medical Branch, Department of Surgery, Metabolism Unit, 815 Market Street, Galveston, Texas 77550, USA.


Endocrine regulation of the balance between skeletal muscle anabolism and catabolism has been investigated extensively. Factors determining whether hormones exert anabolic or catabolic influences are multifaceted and often unclear. Testosterone, growth hormone, insulin and insulin-like growth factor-I have complex anabolic effects, some of which have only recently been elucidated, and are important regulators of muscle remodeling, whereas glucocorticoids have direct catabolic effects and induce muscle protein loss. The effects of estrogen are poorly understood and warrant further study. We review recent literature and evaluate the hormones driving skeletal muscle anabolism and catabolism, which ultimately dictate the endocrinology and metabolism of skeletal muscle in humans. Understanding hormonal regulation of skeletal muscle remodeling might facilitate development of improved hormone-mediated therapies for muscle wasting conditions.

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