The thyroid-stimulating hormone receptor (TSHR) is a membrane-bound receptor primarily expressed on the surface of thyroid follicular cells, which are the cells responsible for the production and secretion of thyroid hormones. The binding of TSH to TSHR on thyroid cells triggers a series of signaling events that stimulate the production and release of thyroid hormones (T3 and T4), a process that is essential for maintaining the balance of thyroid hormone levels in the body, which, in turn, is critical for proper metabolic function, growth, and development. In Graves’ disease, an autoimmune disorder is characterized by the production of autoantibodies that activate TSHR, there is excessive stimulation of the thyroid gland, and increased production of thyroid hormones.
Antibodies against TSHR are used in research to study the expression, structure, and function of TSHR in normal and pathological conditions. In clinical diagnostics, the measurement of anti-TSHR antibodies is used to aid in diagnosing autoimmune thyroid disorders, especially Graves’ disease.
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