Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH, follitropin) is a hormone synthesized and secreted by gonadotropes in the anterior pituitary gland. FSH regulates the reproductive processes of the human body. FSH and Luteinizing hormone (LH) act synergistically in reproduction. In the female ovary, FSH stimulates the growth of immature Graafian follicles to maturation. In males, FSH enhances the production of androgen-binding protein, required for spermatogenesis. Like the other glycoprotein hormones, FSH consists of a common alpha subunit and a unique beta subunit.
Inhibins and activins are two closely related complexes which inhibit and activate respectively, FSH synthesis and secretion (Bilezikjian et al, 2006).