parathyroid glands

[ (par-uh-theye-royd) ]

A set of four small glands on the undersurface of the thyroid gland that function in the endocrine system. The parathyroid glands secrete a hormone that regulates the metabolism of calcium and phosphorus.

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The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.