What is the difference between the pituitary gland and the pineal gland?

1 Answer
Jul 9, 2016
  • Pituitary gland is located on ventral side of vertebrate brain, while pineal gland is towards dorsal side.
  • Pituitary gland secretes a number of hormones controlling various organs of the body but pineal gland secretes only one hormone.



  • Pituitary gland is divided in anterior and posterior parts, pineal has no such division.
  • Anterior pituitary secretes Thyroid stimulating hormone, Adreno-cortico trophic hormone, Growth hormone, Follicle stimulating hormone, Luteinising hormone, and Prolactin.
  • Posterior pituitary secretes oxytocin and vasopressin.

  • Pineal gland secretes sleep inducing melatonin hormone.

In lower vertebrates, pineal gland acts as photoreceptor, i.e. it represents a third eye.