The endocrine system is made of eight major glands, each of which secretes different types of hormones that regulate metabolism, growth and development, tissue function, sexual function, reproduction, sleep and mood, among other things.
Signals from the endocrine system throughout the body can take effect within a few hours or weeks. The glands of the endocrine system include:
• the hypothalamus, pituitary gland and pineal gland (all located in the brain)
• the thyroid gland, located in the throat
• the thymus, near the heart
• the pancreas and adrenal glands, in the abdomen
• the testes (in the male) or ovaries (in the female)