Dehydroepiandrosterone - is the fountain of youth drying out?

Physiol Res. 2003;52(4):397-407.


Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) and its sulphate-bound form (DHEAS) are important steroids mainly of adrenal origin. Their physiological and pathophysiological functions are not yet fully identified, although a number of various possible features have been hypothesized. Most popular is the description of the "hormone of youth" as the long-term dynamics of DHEA levels are characterized by a sharp age-related decline in the late adulthood and later. Low levels of DHEA are, however, associated not only with the ageing process but also with diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular diseases and some neurological or immunological entities. In the past decade, a number of brief studies have concentrated on these relationships and also on the role of exogenous DHEA in health, disease and human well-being. This article tries to summarize some of the most important facts achieved recently.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aging / physiology*
  • Dehydroepiandrosterone / metabolism
  • Dehydroepiandrosterone / pharmacology
  • Dehydroepiandrosterone / physiology*
  • Female
  • Hormone Replacement Therapy
  • Humans
  • Male


  • Dehydroepiandrosterone