Navigation Links
Study Shows How Stress Triggers Immune System
Date:1/23/2012

By Randy Dotinga
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, Jan. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Shedding some light on why stress might be bad for you, a new study finds that parts of your immune system ramp up when you get into personal conflicts with others.

It's not clear how this effect of stress may make you sick, but the activated parts of the immune system -- which cause inflammation in the body -- have been linked to conditions such as diabetes and cancer.

"The message is that the flotsam and jetsam of life predict changes in your underlying biology in ways that cumulatively could have a bad effect on health," said study co-author Shelley Taylor, a professor of psychology at the University of California, Los Angeles. "What this tells me is that people should be investing in socially supportive relationships, and they should not court relationships that lead to a great deal of conflict."

It's well-known that stress causes several reactions in the body. "Stress activates the immune system in preparation for fighting infection and healing wounds," explained Dr. Andrew Miller, a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Emory University School of Medicine, in Atlanta. "This is not a bad thing, especially in the context of a situation where a fight and wounding may ensue. However, if the immune system is constantly activated, this can contribute to a multitude of chronic health problems, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer and neuropsychiatric disorders."

In the new study, researchers sought to determine whether the stress of personal conflicts and competitive sports would trigger the release of molecules known as cytokines, which are linked to inflammation.

The researchers paid 122 young adults (53 men and 69 women) to take part in the study. The participants filled out diaries about their activities over eight days, focusing on their interactions with others and whether these were positive or negative. The participants were also given stress tests in the lab. Saliva samples were taken before and after those tests, to measure biological markers for inflammation.

The researchers found that cytokine levels went up after "negative" interactions, usually arguments. But playing sports didn't have the same effect, even though it's competitive. This may be because "we're really talking about people doing friendly games," Taylor said. "We're not looking at USC playing in the football finals."

It's possible that some kinds of competitions, like poker games, could trigger inflammation, she said.

Why does it matter if stress triggers molecules linked to inflammation? "If you aren't wounded, there's no place for them to go, and they're circulating," Taylor said. "It's not like they've gone to the site of a wound and engaged in anti-infection activity."

Low-grade inflammation in the body can contribute to the buildup of artery-blocking plaque and contribute to disorders linked to an out-of-control immune system, such as asthma, Taylor said.

So what does this all mean? The challenge, Emory's Miller said, is figuring out which came first -- stress or inflammation.

"Do aggressive, socially disadvantaged individuals exhibit more inflammation because they are constantly stressed?" he asked. "Or are they running their immune system hot because that is their fundamental nature, and the cytokines are driving their aggression because cytokines induce the brain to perceive the world as threatening?"

The study appears in this week's issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

More information

For more about stress, visit the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

SOURCES: Shelley E. Taylor, Ph.D., professor, psychology, University of California, Los Angeles; Andrew H. Miller, M.D., professor, psychiatry and behavioral sciences, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta; Jan. 23-27, 2012, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Despite Treatment, Employees with Depression Generate Higher Absentee Costs, According to Thomson Reuters Study
2. American Council on Exercise (ACE) Study Reveals Kettlebells Provide Powerful Workout in Short Amount of Time
3. TV drama can be more persuasive than news program, study finds
4. Study carried out into biological risks of eating reptiles
5. Neuroimaging study may pave way for effective Alzheimers treatments
6. Study finds racial gaps continue in heart disease awareness
7. Luth Researchs IndicatorEDG(TM) Study Finds Americans Hopes of Achieving Their Dreams Are Fading
8. First blinded study of venous insufficiency prevalence in MS shows promising results
9. Soothing infants with food focus of childhood obesity study
10. People with anxiety disorder less able to regulate response to negative emotions, study shows
11. American Heart Association Rapid Access Journal Report: Study Finds Racial Gaps Continue in Heart Disease Awareness, Low Knowledge of Heart Attack Warning Signs Among Women
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Study Shows How Stress Triggers Immune System
(Date:1/16/2017)... , ... January 16, 2017 , ... Gym Source, America’s ... a new showroom in East Hanover, New Jersey. , “We are elated to be ... new innovative in-store concept is designed to give clients a seamless and motivating shopping ...
(Date:1/16/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... January 16, 2017 , ... ... office , Antoine Dental Center, is currently offering complimentary consultations and financing for ... their teeth examined for bite irregularities and learn about their orthodontic options. Walk-in, ...
(Date:1/16/2017)... ... January 16, 2017 , ... Atlanta-based incentive company ... in the wheelchair accessibility industry, BraunAbility . Incentive Solutions will provide BraunAbility ... accessible vehicles. With this new incentive plan, BraunAbility plans to continue their tradition ...
(Date:1/16/2017)... ... January 16, 2017 , ... In ... education and high-level training standards to an international multidisciplinary group of healthcare treatment ... As a way to further its mission at the grassroots level, iaedp launched ...
(Date:1/16/2017)... ... January 16, 2017 , ... NexTec Group has been ... of 100 organizations honored for their accomplishments in the field of midmarket financial software. ... leadership and recognition, and innovation. Selection is not based on revenue and those firms ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:1/17/2017)... , January 17, 2017 - First ... MENA healthcare market expected to grow by a CAGR of ... Holding, the Qatari holding company which operates globally across a number ... achieved a number of notable successes and is well-positioned for further ... ...
(Date:1/16/2017)... -- Summary GlobalData,s new report, "North ... market data on the North America Bone Densitometers market. ... volume (in units) and average prices (USD) within market ... Ultrasound (QUS). The report also provides company shares ... segements, and global corporate-level profiles of the key market ...
(Date:1/16/2017)... Derek H. Potts , founder and ... appointed Liaison Counsel in California,s ... In this role, Potts was assigned to serve as ... the Court and Co Lead Plaintiff,s Counsel. Co-Counsel includes ... Fairchild & Wade and Ruth Rizkalla ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: