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Orv Hetil. 2012 Dec 23;153(51):2041-7. doi: 10.1556/OH.2012.29503.

[The heart as an endocrine organ].

[Article in Hungarian]

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  • 1Pécsi Tudományegyetem, Klinikai Központ I. Belgyógyászati Klinika Pécs Ifjúság u. 13. 7624.


The discovery of cardiac hormone production significantly changed the evaluation of the function of the heart, which is rather regarded as a determining factor of the electrolyte and hemodynamic homeostasis cooperating with other organ systems instead of a mechanical pump. The most important hormones produced by the heart are the natriuretic peptides that have the primary role of protection against volume overload through natriuretic, diuretic, vasodilator and antiproliferative effects. They are integrative markers of the cardiac, vascular and renal functions and marking cardiorenal distress. Brain natriuretic peptide and the N-terminal pro-hormone (NT-proBNP) became generally accepted markers of heart failure exceeding traditional pathophysiological significance of those. They are useful in the diagnosis, estimation of prognosis and therapy guidance and their therapeutic administration is also available. Although the detection of extraadrenal aldosterone production is an exciting new discovery, intracardial aldosterone production is not significant in human beings. The intracardial thyroid hormone production is regulated by deiodinase activity. The role of elevated T3 concentration was suggested in the development of cardiac hypertrophy, while low T3 is assumed to be important in adaptation to hypoxia. An unexpected, complex relation can be determined between epicardial adipose tissue and coronary artery diseases, cytokine and adipokine production of adipocytes might be a part of the self-enhancing process of atherosclerosis.

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