A review of dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA)

Integr Physiol Behav Sci. Sep-Dec 1995;30(4):308-13. doi: 10.1007/BF02691603.


Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) is quantitatively the most abundant hormone in humans and mammals, with a wide variety of physiological effects, including major regulatory effects upon the immune system. Two of the most striking aspects of DHEA are a steady decline in DHEA with age and a significant deficiency in DHEA in patients with several major diseases, including cancer, atherosclerosis, and Alzheimer's disease. The hormone is secreted in a non-sulfated (DHEA) and sulfated form (DHEA-S). The two are apparently interchangeable, and it appears likely that its physiological effects are achieved by derivative molecules that have yet to be identified.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Dehydroepiandrosterone / deficiency
  • Dehydroepiandrosterone / metabolism
  • Dehydroepiandrosterone / physiology*
  • Dehydroepiandrosterone / therapeutic use
  • Humans


  • Dehydroepiandrosterone