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Growth hormone (GH), also known as somatotropin (or as human growth hormone [hGH or HGH] in its human form), is a peptide hormone that stimulates growth, cell reproduction, and cell regeneration in humans and other animals. It is thus important in human development. It is a type of mitogen which is specific only to certain kinds of cells. Growth hormone is a 191-amino acid, single-chain polypeptide that is synthesized, stored and secreted by somatotropic cells within the lateral wings of the anterior pituitary gland.

GH is a stress hormone that stimulates production of IGF-1 and raises the concentration of glucose and free fatty acids.