Article

Modulation of cellular immunity in medical students

The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, United States
Journal of Behavioral Medicine (Impact Factor: 3.1). 03/1986; 9(1):5-21. DOI: 10.1007/BF00844640
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT This study assessed the psychosocial modulation of cellular immunity in 34 medical-student volunteers. The first blood sample was obtained 1 month before examinations, and the second on the day of examinations. There were significant declines in the percentage of helper/inducer T-lymphocytes, in the helper/inducer-suppressor/cytotoxic-cell ratio, and in natural killer-cell activity in the blood samples obtained on the day of examinations. Half of the subjects were randomly assigned to a relaxation group which met between sample points; the frequency of relaxation practice was a significant predictor of the percentages of helper/inducer cells in the examination sample. Three biochemical nutritional assays (albumin, transferrin, and total iron-binding protein) were within normal limits on both samples. Data from the Brief Symptom Inventory showed significantly increased global self-rated distress associated with examinations in the no-intervention group, compared to nonsignificant change in the relaxation group. Clinical and theoretical implications are discussed.

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    • "Though a convenient stressor, it occurs against a background of academic stressors and peer pressures which as will be seen complicate interpretations of outcome. Kiecolt-Glaser et al. (1986) compared with a control group, the effects of relaxation training on mood and immune function in first year medical students. The IMMUNITY, WELL-BEING AND HEALTH 151 intervention consisted of three weeks of relaxation training involving five group sessions of self - hypnosis , progressive relaxation , autogenic training and imagery exercises ; a menu from which students could self - select in order to practise at home , prior to exams . "
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    ABSTRACT: This review considers psychological interventions involving relaxation and guided imagery targeting immune functions. The review provides evidence of immune control accompanied by reports of enhanced mood and well-being. Three recent investigations of the author and his colleagues with self-hypnosis training incorporating imagery of the immune system are outlined. In two studies, hypnosis buffered the effects of stress on immune functions in medical students at exam time, and the comparison of self-hypnosis with and without immune imagery confirmed advantages to targeted imagery for both immune function and mood, and importantly, fewer winter viral infections. The implications for health were investigated in a third study in patients with virulent and chronic herpes simplex virus-2 HSV-2). Six weeks of training almost halved recurrence, improved mood and reduced levels of clinical depression and anxiety. Immune functions were up-regulated, notably functional natural killer cell activity to HSV-1. Individual differences in hypnotic susceptibility and absorption have typically been found to predict efficacy. New replicable evidence is reviewed of the importance of cognitive activation, a personality difference whose neurophysiological underpinning is consistent with left hemispheric preferential influences over the immune system. Now that the validation of psychological interventions includes advantages for health, this field of enquiry, which has been characterised by modest, small scale, largely preliminary studies, warrants a greater investment in research.
    Stress 07/2002; 5(2):147-63. DOI:10.1080/10253890290027877 · 3.46 Impact Factor
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    • "– Recuentos de CD4+, CD8+ y ratio CD4+/CD8+: disminuciones (Glaser et al., 1985; Kiecolt-Glaser et al., 1986; Halvorsen et al., 1987) y aumentos (Dorian et al., 1982). – Porcentajes de monocitos: aumentos (Halvorsen et al., 1987) y no cambios significativos (Matalka et al., 1998). "
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    ABSTRACT: El objetivo de este estudio es analizar la respuesta psicológica e inmune frente a una situación de estrés académico. A trece estudiantes que iban a realizar la prueba de Selectividad se les pasó una batería de tests psicológicos, autoinformes, y se les tomó muestras de sangre para determinar variables inmunológicas, trece días antes del examen y el día previo al mismo. Los resultados muestran un aumento significativo en ansiedad y disminuciones significativas en los recuentos de linfocitos totales, monocitos, linfocitos T CD8+ y células NK, no variando los linfocitos T CD4+ totales pero sí su porcentaje y la ratio CD4/CD8+ que aumentaron. Asimismo encontramos un efecto modulador de la ansiedad-rasgo, al observar diferencias significativas, entre altos y bajos en esta variable, en el nivel de leucocitos, monocitos, neutrófilos y linfocitos CD8+; además, la interacción entre ansiedad-rasgo y la sesión resultó significativa para el porcentaje de linfocitos CD8+ y la ratio CD4/CD8+.
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    • "The most useful model turned out to be a large class of medical students at examination time. In this model, numerous subtle changes in peripheral blood immune cell numbers, lymphocyte proliferation, and cytokine production were observed (Kiecolt-Glaser, et al., 1986). After examination time, all of these alterations in immune function were reversed. "
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    ABSTRACT: Long-term space voyages pose numerous known and unknown health hazards, to the human immune system. Well-studied clinical examples of secondary immunodeficiencies created on Earth, lead one to predict that the conditions of prolonged space flight would weaken the human immune responses that normally hold infection and cancer in check. From evidence gathered from humans flown for prolonged periods in space and from human models of space flight studied on Earth it is reasonable to suspect that space travelers to the planet Mars would experience a weakening of immunity. Subtle defects of immune cell structure and function have been observed in astronauts, such as weakening of specific T-lymphocyte recall of specific antigens. Ground-based models also have demonstrated alterations of immune function, such as the elevation of neuroendocrine immune system messengers, interleukin-6, and soluble tumor necrosis factor-alpha receptor in sleep deprivation. Since severe immune compromise the clinical consequences of reactivation of latent virus infections and the development of cancer, has yet to be seen in space flight or in the Earth models, it is extremely important to begin to quantify early changes in immunity to predict the development of immune system collapse with poor clinical outcomes. This approach is designed to validate a number of surrogate markers that will predict trouble ahead. Inherent in this research is the development of countermeasures to reduce the risks of infection and cancer in the first humans going to Mars.
    Gravitational and space biology bulletin: publication of the American Society for Gravitational and Space Biology 07/2001; 14(2):7-14.
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