Anatomy & Physiology Endocrine #15

Question

Which nerve is essential for the accurate secretion of melatonin by the endocrine system?

Answers

  1. Ulnar nerve
    • Rationale:

      The ulnar nerve is not essential for the secretion of melatonin from the pineal gland.

  2. Optic nerve
    • Rationale:

      The secretion of melatonin is stimulated and released with darkness. It is inhibited when light is sensed. The optic nerve is responsible for the body’s ability to sense lightness and darkness.

  3. Radial nerve
    • Rationale:

      The radial nerve is not essential for the secretion of melatonin from the pineal gland.

  4. Sciatic nerve
    • Rationale:

      The sciatic nerve is not essential for the secretion of melatonin from the pineal gland.

Overview

The endocrine system often works with other systems within the body to maintain homeostasis. The pineal gland, which is an endocrine structure, is no exception.

Explanation

Learning Outcomes

The pineal gland secretes melatonin. Melatonin is essential in the maintenance of the body’s circadian rhythm. Melatonin production is stimulated by the light (or the lack of life) that enters the body via the optic nerve.

Test Taking Tip

Consider the stimulus that is required for the release of melatonin to correctly answer this question.

Video Rationale