Lessons from growth hormone receptor gene-disrupted mice: Are there benefits of endocrine defects?

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© 2018 European Society of Endocrinology Printed in Great Britain. Growth hormone (GH) is produced primarily by anterior pituitary somatotroph cells. Numerous acute human (h) GH treatment and long-term follow-up studies and extensive use of animal models of GH action have shaped the body of GH research over the past 70 years. Work on the GH receptor (R)-knockout (GHRKO) mice and results of studies on GH-resistant Laron Syndrome (LS) patients have helped define many physiological actions of GH including those dealing with metabolism, obesity, cancer, diabetes, cognition and aging/longevity. In this review, we have discussed several issues dealing with these biological effects of GH and attempt to answer the question of whether decreased GH action may be beneficial.