Definition: A peptide hormone, of which eight forms in five species are known; composed of 32 amino acids and produced by the parathyroid, thyroid, and thymus glands; its action is opposite to that of parathyroid hormone in that calcitonin increases deposition of calcium and phosphate in bone and lowers the level of calcium in the blood; its level in the blood is increased by glucagon and by Ca2+ and thus opposes postprandial hypercalcemia.
[calci- + G. tonos, stretching, + -in]
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