Osmolar Control of Prolactin Secretion in Man

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Science  24 Aug 1973:
Vol. 181, Issue 4101, pp. 755-757
DOI: 10.1126/science.181.4101.755


To study the effect of changing serum osmolality on serum prolactin concentration 11 volunteers were given oral and intravenous hypotonic and hypertonic fluids. Mean serum prolactin fell to 10.5 percent of baseline after oral water loading and to 15 percent of baseline after intravenous hypotonic saline infusion. Conversely, mean prolactin rose to 417 percent of baseline after intravenous hypertonic saline administration. The correlation coefficient of simultaneously determined serum prolactin and osmolality was highly significant (P 〈 .001). Isoosmolar changes in extracellular fluid volume did not consistently affect the concentration of prolactin in the serum. Thus, prolactin may be involved in the physiologic regulation of osmolar balance and the kidney may be an important farget organ for prolaction.