Last reviewed 01/2018

Androgens are C19 steroid sex hormones whose action is masculinizing.

The principal androgen is testosterone. It is mainly secreted by the testis. It is more active than any of the androgens secreted by the adrenal cortex. Its concentration is under the control of FSH and LH.

Androgen secretion by the adrenal cortex is influenced by ACTH but not by gonadotrophins.

Adrenal androgens accentuate secondary male characteristics in post-pubertal males; however, they cause precocious pseudopuberty in both boys and girls; in girls they may cause virilization.