A tridimensional view of pituitary development and function

Patrice Mollard, David J Hodson, Chrystel Lafont, Karine Rizzoti, Jacques Drouin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

73 Citations (Scopus)


Recent advances in tridimensional (3D) tissue imaging have considerably enriched our view of the pituitary gland and its development. Whereas traditional histology of the pituitary anterior lobe portrayed this tissue as a patchwork of cells, 3D imaging revealed that cells of each lineage form extensive and structured homotypic networks. In the adult gland these networks contribute to the robustness and coordination of the cell response to secretagogs. In addition, the network organization adapts to changes in endocrine environment, as revealed by the sexually dimorphic growth hormone (GH) cell network. Further work is required to establish better the molecular basis for homotypic and heterotypic interactions in the pituitary as well as the implications of these interactions for pituitary function and dysfunction in humans.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)261-9
Number of pages9
JournalTrends in Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2012

Bibliographical note

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


  • Animals
  • Cell Communication
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Humans
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional
  • Mice
  • Pituitary Gland
  • Pituitary Gland, Anterior
  • Signal Transduction


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