Anatomy & Physiology Endocrine #5


Which hormone is both released from, and stored within, the posterior pituitary gland?


  1. Oxytocin
    • Rationale:

      Oxytocin is a hormone that is both secreted, and stored, in the posterior pituitary gland. Its primary function is to stimulate contractions to facilitate childbirth.

  2. Vasopressin
    • Rationale:

      Vasopressin is a hormone that is secreted by the hypothalamus and the posterior pituitary gland. It is not, however, stored in the posterior pituitary gland.

  3. Growth hormone
    • Rationale:

      Growth hormone is secreted by the anterior, not posterior, pituitary gland.

  4. Antidiuretic hormone
    • Rationale:

      Antidiuretic hormone is stored, but not secreted, by the posterior pituitary gland.


The pituitary gland is a small pea-sized gland that plays a major role in general well-being and regulating vital functions within the body.


Learning Outcomes

The pituitary gland controls the activity of most of the other hormone-secreting glands within the endocrine system. The pituitary gland is divided into the anterior pituitary, the intermediate pituitary, and the posterior pituitary. The posterior pituitary is responsible for the secretion and storage of oxytocin.

Test Taking Tip

Consider the function of the posterior thyroid gland when answering this question.

Video Rationale