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prostaglandin

prostaglandin (prŏs´təglăn´dən), any of a group of about a dozen compounds synthesized from fatty acids in mammals as well as in lower animals. Prostaglandins are highly potent substances that are not stored but are produced as needed by cell membranes in virtually every body tissue. Different prostaglandins have been found to raise or lower blood pressure and regulate smooth muscle activity and glandular secretion. One such substance, which stimulates contraction of the uterus, is used clinically to induce labor; another has been in experimental use as a birth control agent. Prostaglandins also control the substances involved in the transmission of nerve impulses, participate in the body's defenses against infection, and regulate the rate of metabolism in various tissues. Several prostaglandins have been shown to induce fever, possibly by participating in the temperature-regulating mechanisms in the hypothalamus; they also play a part in causing inflammation. The fact that aspirin and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs have been shown to inhibit prostaglandin synthesis may account for their usefulness in reducing fever and inflammation. Many naturally occurring prostaglandins as well as many artificial forms have been synthesized in the laboratory.

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"prostaglandin." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"prostaglandin." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 22, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/prostaglandin

"prostaglandin." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved October 22, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/prostaglandin

prostaglandin

prostaglandin Any of a group of organic compounds derived from essential fatty acids and causing a range of physiological effects in animals. Prostaglandins have been detected in most body tissues. They act at very low concentrations to cause the contraction of smooth muscle; natural and synthetic prostaglandins are used to induce abortion or labour in humans and domestic animals. Two prostaglandin derivatives have antagonistic effects on blood circulation: thromboxane A2 causes blood clotting, while prostacyclin causes blood vessels to dilate. Prostaglandins are also involved in inflammation, being released from affected tissues. See also aspirin.

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"prostaglandin." A Dictionary of Biology. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"prostaglandin." A Dictionary of Biology. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 22, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/prostaglandin-0

"prostaglandin." A Dictionary of Biology. . Retrieved October 22, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/prostaglandin-0

prostaglandin

prostaglandin (pros-tă-gland-in) n. one of a group of hormone-like substances present in a wide variety of tissues and body fluids. Prostaglandins have many actions; for example, they cause contraction of smooth muscle (including that of the uterus) and dilatation of blood vessels, they are mediators in the process of inflammation, and they are involved in the production of mucus in the stomach. Synthetic prostaglandins are used to induce labour or produce abortion and to treat peptic ulcers, glaucoma, and (in newborn babies) congenital heart disease.

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"prostaglandin." A Dictionary of Nursing. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"prostaglandin." A Dictionary of Nursing. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 22, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/caregiving/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/prostaglandin

"prostaglandin." A Dictionary of Nursing. . Retrieved October 22, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/caregiving/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/prostaglandin

prostaglandin

prostaglandin One of a group of C20 fatty acids, each containing a five membered ring. Prostaglandins differ from one another in the number and position of double bonds and hydroxyl-group constituents. Their biological effects include the lowering of blood pressure and the stimulation of smooth-muscle contraction.

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"prostaglandin." A Dictionary of Zoology. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"prostaglandin." A Dictionary of Zoology. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 22, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/prostaglandin

"prostaglandin." A Dictionary of Zoology. . Retrieved October 22, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/prostaglandin

prostaglandin

prostaglandin One of a series of related fatty acids, with hormone-like action, present in semen and liver, brain and other tissues. Their biological effects include the lowering of blood pressure and the stimulation of contraction in a variety of smooth-muscle tissues, such as in the uterus.

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"prostaglandin." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. 22 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"prostaglandin." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 22, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/prostaglandin

"prostaglandin." World Encyclopedia. . Retrieved October 22, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/prostaglandin