The concept of "stimulus-secretion coupling" suggested by Douglas and co-workers to explain the events related to monamine discharge by the adrenal medulla (5, 7) may be applied to other endocrine tissues, such as adrenal cortex (36), pancreatic islets (4), and magnocellular hypothalamic neurons (6), which exhibit a similar ion-dependent process of hormone elaboration. In addition, they share another feature, that of joining neighbor cells via membrane junctions (12, 26, and Fletcher, unpublished observation). Given this, and the reports that hormone secretion by the pars distalis also involves a secretagogue-induced decrease in membrane bioelectric potential accompanied by a rise in cellular [Ca++] (27, 34, 41), it was appropriate to test the possibility that cells of the anterior pituitary gland are united by junctions.

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