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18. 4. 2012.

Adrenocorticotropic hormone(ACTH)

Adrenocorticotropic hormone is polypeptide contained of 39 amino-acids. ACTH is synthetized and released in front part of pituitary glandula. Basic function of this hormone is to control secretion of glycocorticoids(cortisole and corticosterone) of adrenal glandula. Almost any type of stress significantly increases secretion of ACTH, and along with that glycocorticoids(cortisole even 20 times more than in condition of peace). Hypothalamus controls the secretion of ACTH, through factor that releases corticotropine(CRF – corticotropine releasing factor). Through negative feedback cortisol directly influences to: 1) hypothalamus – decreases CRF creation and 2) adenohypophisis – decreases ACTH creation. That way is regulated concentration of cortisole in plasma. 

Appliance in sport

Adrenocorticotropic hormone is used in sport due to effects that act indirectly, through glycocorticoids. One of motives in anti-inflammatory effect of ACTH on tissue injuries, created as a result of sport trainings(pain removal). Other reason for abuse is mood correction(stimulative act on CNS), which leads to athlete success.

Harmful effects

Short term use can lead to irritation of gastric mucosa and creation of gastric ulcus, and psychological effects like irritability.
Long term effects are manifested through: connective tissue damage, weakness of injured muscles, bones, tendons or ligaments(worsening of injured tissue condition); osteoporosis and cataracta(lens blur).


Adrenocorticotropic hormone can be detected by use or radioimmunoassay test.

“Doping in sport”, Marina Djordjevic Nikic

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