Estrogen

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Estrogens (AmE), oestrogens (BE), or œstrogens, are a group of steroid compounds, named for their importance in the estrous cycle, and functioning as the primary female sex hormones. Their name comes from the Greek words estrus/οίστρος = sexual desire + gen/γόνο = to generate.

Estrogens are synthesized in all vertebrates[1] as well as some insects.[2] The presence of these steroids in both vertebrate and insects suggests that estrogenic sex hormones have an ancient history.

Estrogens are used as part of some oral contraceptives, in estrogen replacement therapy for postmenopausal women, and in hormone replacement therapy for trans women.

Like all steroid hormones, estrogens readily diffuse across the cell membrane. Once inside the cell, they bind to and activate estrogen receptors which in turn modulate the expression of many genes.[3] Additionally, estrogens have been shown to activate a G protein-coupled receptor, GPR30.[4]

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