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Molecular aspects of hormonal regulation 

Molecular aspects of hormonal regulation
Chapter:
Molecular aspects of hormonal regulation
Author(s):

Shern L. Chew

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199235292.003.1024
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date: 19 October 2017

The wide molecular effects of hormones have complicated the understanding of how hormones work on a cell. The old view was of a linear signalling pathway from the receptor to the nucleus, thereby stimulating gene transcription. This view is probably an oversimplification. Hormones can not only regulate most of the molecular machines of the cell, certainly the transcription machinery, but also others. These machines perform and coordinate functions such as RNA and protein biosynthesis, macromolecular transport, cell division or death, and intracellular signalling. Physiological studies have shown that hormonal regulation is specific, yet flexible, and has the ability to generate feedback loops. Advances in genetics, cellular, and molecular biology, and biochemistry have allowed much new, and sometimes confusing, data on the mechanisms underlying hormonal regulation. Many advances have been due to methods of identifying and verifying networks of interactions between proteins. One example is the yeast two-hybrid system, an in vivo genetic screening method for such interactions. Another example is the use of protein tagging (e.g. with histidine residues) which can allow rapid and high-yield protein purification for biochemical studies. This chapter will briefly review some of the mechanisms of hormonal regulation.

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