The heterologous regulation of hormone receptors is well described in the hormone receptor literature. We were interested in determining whether human 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D-3 receptor (hVDR) and glucocorticoid receptor (GR), members of the steroid/thyroid hormone receptor family, are heterologously regulated by other steroids and related hormones. We used human osteosarcoma cells (MG-63) and measured hVDR and GR mRNA levels after androgen, estrogen, glucocorticoid, progesterone, thyroid hormone, vitamin A and vitamin D treatments. Each hormone, except androgen and progesterone, was capable of increasing hVDR mRNA levels like the natural ligand in human osteosarcoma cells. On the other hand, GR gene expression was not affected by these hormones. To study whether the cells responded to the 1,25(OH)2D3-treatment with changes in differentiation and proliferation, we also studied c-myc and c-fos gene expression. Both genes were only regulated by 1,25(OH)2D3. 1,25(OH)2D3 slightly increased the accumulation of c-fos mRNA within 4-12 h from the hormone addition, while the increase in c-myc mRNA appeared at 24 h.