Situated along the perimeter of the adrenal gland, the adrenal cortex mediates the stress response through the production of mineralocorticoids and glucocorticoids, including aldosterone and cortisol respectively. It is also a secondary site of androgen synthesis.
|Most superficial cortical layer||zona glomerulosa||mineralocorticoids (eg, aldosterone)|
|Middle cortical layer||zona fasciculata||glucocorticoids (eg, cortisol)|
|Deepest cortical layer||zona reticularis||weak androgens (eg, dehydroepiandrosterone)|
The steps up to this point occur in many steroid-producing tissues. Subsequent steps, however, only occur in the adrenal cortex: