The secretion of hypothalamic, pituitary, and target tissue hormones is under tight regulatory control by a series of feedback and feed- forward loops. This complexity can be demonstrated using the growth hormone (GH) regulatory system as an example. The stimulatory substance growth hormone releasing hormone (GHRH) and the inhibitory substance somatostatin (SS) both products of the hypothalamus, control pituitary GH secretion. Somatostatin is also called growth hormone-inhibiting hormone (GHIH). Under the influence of GHRH, growth hormone is released into the systemic circulation, causing the target tissue to secrete insulin-like growth factor-1, IGF-1. Growth hormone also has other more direct metabolic effects; it is both hyperglycemic and lipolytic. The principal source of systemic IGF-1 is the liver, although most other tissues secrete and contribute to systemic IGF-1. Liver IGF-1 is considered to be the principal regulator of tissue growth. In particular, the IGF-1 secreted by the liver is believed to synchronize growth throughout the body, resulting in a homeostatic balance of tissue size and mass. IGF-1 secreted by peripheral tissues is generally considered to be autocrine or paracrine in its biological action.
Steroid hormone receptors and related receptors are generally soluble proteins that function through gene activation. Lipid-soluble hormones target specific sequences of DNA by diffusing into the cell. When they have diffused into the cell, they bind to receptors (intracellular), and migrate into the nucleus.  heir response elements are DNA sequences (promoters) that are bound by the complex of the steroid bound to its receptor. The receptors themselves are zinc-finger proteins.  These receptors include those for glucocorticoids ( glucocorticoid receptors ), estrogens ( estrogen receptors ), androgens ( androgen receptors ), thyroid hormone (T3) ( thyroid hormone receptors ), calcitriol (the active form of vitamin D ) ( calcitriol receptors ), and the retinoids ( vitamin A ) ( retinoid receptors ). Receptor-protein interactions induce the uptake and destruction of their respective hormones in order to regulate their concentration in the body. This is especially important for steroid hormones because many body systems are entirely steroid dependent. 
Many hormones and their structural and functional analogs are used as medication . The most commonly prescribed hormones are estrogens and progestogens (as methods of hormonal contraception and as HRT ),  thyroxine (as levothyroxine , for hypothyroidism ) and steroids (for autoimmune diseases and several respiratory disorders ). Insulin is used by many diabetics . Local preparations for use in otolaryngology often contain pharmacologic equivalents of adrenaline , while steroid and vitamin D creams are used extensively in dermatological practice.