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Endocrine is an adjective used to describe a number of chemicals and organs/tissues in living organisms. Endocrine organs or tissues release chemicals (called hormones) that enter the bloodstream and act on target cells far away from the hormone-producing cell, thereby changing the behavior of the target cell. This is in contrast to other hormone-producing cells which may release chemical signals only into their immediate environment, thereby affecting only local cells.

Examples of endocrine glands and their associated hormones in humans include the thyroid gland (thyroxine), the pancreas (glucagon and insulin), adrenal glands (adrenaline and cortisol), testes (testosterone), and ovaries (estrogen and progesterone).