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Sorry for a certainly naive question. Some references (for example https://faculty.washington.edu/chudler/nsdivide.html) seem to to indicate that the hypothalamus is part of the Central Nervous System. Others (for example http://kidshealth.org/teen/your_body/body_basics/endocrine.html) place it in the Endrocrine System. I would have said it is part of both, but then I read the two systems are distinct. Could anyone explain me to which one it belongs and why?

Thanks,

Gilles

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    $\begingroup$ CNS refers to the brain and spinal cord. Its a very general term. Hypothalamus is part of the CNS but its unique in a sense that it secretes many chemicals into the bloodstream like glands! so they are both correct! $\endgroup$ – Bez Oct 22 '14 at 21:11
  • $\begingroup$ If the above comment has answered your question, please let me know so I can post it as an answer so that the question does not remain unanswered. $\endgroup$ – Bez Oct 23 '14 at 12:27
  • $\begingroup$ Hi Bez, I was just waiting a little to see if anyone else would argue with what you said. Please post it as an answer as it is exactly what I was after. $\endgroup$ – Gilles Oct 23 '14 at 13:35
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CNS refers to the brain and spinal cord. Its a very general term. Hypothalamus is part of the CNS structure but its unique in a sense that it secretes many chemicals into the bloodstream like glands hence part of the endocrine system! so they are both correct!

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    $\begingroup$ Can you add some references to your answer? Actually it is more a comment. $\endgroup$ – Chris Oct 28 '14 at 11:24
  • $\begingroup$ @Chris Apologies for failing to reference. Hope the response references are satisfactory. $\endgroup$ – Bez Oct 28 '14 at 11:34
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It is part of the CNS and does not secrete hormones into the bloodstream. Instead, it delivers input to the pituitary gland, which is an endocrine organ and secretes hormones into the bloodstream. Please refer to http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypothalamus and specifically the section "Neural Connections". Otherwise, any basic neuroscience or endocrinology textbook covers this under hypothalamic-pituitary axis or the likes. Hope this helps.

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    $\begingroup$ Can you add some references to your answer? Actually it is more a comment. $\endgroup$ – Chris Oct 28 '14 at 11:24
  • $\begingroup$ I have added some suggestions Gilles. Hope that helps. $\endgroup$ – AliceD Oct 28 '14 at 11:51
  • $\begingroup$ Ps. Questions like these are not naive and opportunity for interesting discussions! $\endgroup$ – AliceD Oct 28 '14 at 11:54

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