Your institution is subscribed to Read Institutional Edition. Log in or Sign Up to read full text articles.


Ectopic secretion of corticotropin-releasing factor as a cause of Cushing's syndrome. A clinical, morphologic, and biochemical study

R M Carey, S K Varma, C R Drake, M O Thorner, K Kovacs, J Rivier, W Vale
New England Journal of Medicine 1984 July 5, 311 (1): 13-20
Corticotropin-releasing factor, a hypophyseo-tropic hormone that stimulates adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) secretion, has recently been isolated, characterized, and synthesized in the sheep and rat. We report on a patient with metastatic carcinoma of the prostate presenting with anterior and posterior pituitary hormone deficiency together with ACTH-dependent Cushing's syndrome. At postmortem examination, large areas of the median eminence and pituitary stalk were replaced by tumor, but the corticotrophs were markedly hyperplastic. Immunostaining of tumor cells was positive for corticotropin-releasing factor and was negative for ACTH and a wide range of other hormones. Radioimmunoassay and bioassays showed that tumor extracts and further purified fractions were active in corticotropin-releasing factor, and the tumor material coeluted with corticotropin-releasing factor on high-pressure liquid chromatography. These studies demonstrate that ectopic secretion of corticotropin-releasing factor is a cause of Cushing's syndrome in human beings. The features of this syndrome include hypercortisolism, pituitary corticotroph hyperplasia, elevation of circulating ACTH levels, and failure to suppress the pituitary-adrenal axis with exogenous glucocorticoids.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Trending Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"

We want to hear from doctors like you!

Take a second to answer a survey question.