Medicine & USMLE

Follicle-Stimulating Hormone (FSH)

Endocrine & Hormones
  1. Leptin
  2. Ghrelin
  3. Protein Hormones
  4. Steroid Hormones
  5. Insulin
  6. Diabetes
  7. Glucagon
  8. Epinephrine
  9. Cortisol
  10. Thyroid Hormones
  11. Calcitonin
  12. Parathyroid Hormone (PTH)
  13. Anterior Pituitary
  14. Prolactin
  15. Luteinizing Hormone (LH)
  16. Follicle-Stimulating Hormone (FSH)
  17. Growth Hormone (GH)
  18. Posterior Pituitary


Follicle-stimulating hormone, or FSH for short, is a protein hormone produced by the anterior pituitary gland. The anterior pituitary gland produces FSH in response to upstream stimulation by GnRH, coming from the hypothalamus. Downstream, FSH targets the ovaries and testes to stimulate oogenesis and spermatogenesis, which play an important role in sexual development and reproduction.

Key Points

  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH)
    • Type: Peptide 
    • Origin: Anterior Pituitary
    • Trigger: Stimulation by GnRH from hypothalamus
      • GnRH = Gonadotropin Releasing Hormone
    • Target: Testes and Ovaries
      • Effect: Stimulates
        • Spermatogenesis
          • Development of sperm in male testes
        • Oogenesis
          • Development of egg in female ovaries