Article

Caregiving is associated with low secretion rates of immunoglobulin A in saliva.

School of Sport and Exercise Sciences, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT, England, United Kingdom.
Brain Behavior and Immunity (Impact Factor: 6.13). 06/2008; 22(4):565-72. DOI: 10.1016/j.bbi.2007.11.007
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Although the chronic stress of caring for a sick/disabled relative has been associated with poorer immunity using a range of outcomes, its impact on secretory immunoglobulin A (S-IgA) in saliva has yet to be examined. Three hypotheses were tested in analyses of data from a large community sample: first, caregivers would have lower S-IgA secretion rates than non-caregivers; second, the impact of caregiving on S-IgA would be particularly apparent in older participants; third, for caregivers, caregiving burden would be negatively associated with S-IgA. The sample comprised three distinct age cohorts, one young (N=623), one middle aged (N=639), and the other elderly (N=582). Participants were classified as caregivers if they regularly cared for somebody other than routine childcare. Caregiving strain was measured and a caregiving burden index was then derived as the composite of the number of people being cared for, the type of care provided, and the residential status of the person being cared for. From 2-min saliva samples, S-IgA secretion rate was measured. There was a significant caregiver status by age cohort interaction; caregivers in the eldest cohort had lower S-IgA secretion rates than their non-caregiving counterparts. Caregiving strain and burden and S-IgA were related, such that caregivers who experienced greater strain and burden had lower S-IgA secretion rates. These findings resonate with those from other studies using different immune outcomes. Considered together, it is clear that that the chronic stress of caregiving has widespread effects on immunity.

0 Followers
 · 
88 Views
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The effect of the chronic stress of bereavement on immunity is poorly understood. Previous studies have demonstrated negative effects on immunity in older adults, and those who report higher depressive symptoms. The aim of the present study was to compare the effect of bereavement on neutrophil function in healthy young and old adults, also assessing serum levels of the stress hormones, cortisol and dehydroepiandrosterone sulphate (DHEAS). 41 young (mean age 32 years) and 52 older adults (mean age 72 years), bereaved and non-bereaved, took part in the study. They completed questionnaires on socio-demographic and health behaviour characteristics, as well as psychosocial variables, and provided a blood sample for analysis of neutrophil function (phagocytosis and reactive oxygen species (ROS) production) and stress hormone analysis.
    Immunity & Ageing 08/2014; 11:13. DOI:10.1186/1742-4933-11-13 · 2.32 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Interdisciplinary work between psychologists and immunologists has shown that factors like stress could be the trigger that leads to the development of a bout of illness. By studying the response to vaccination, we can examine immune function in the context of the rest of the body in a clinically meaningful way. This technique has been used to demonstrate consistent relationships between stress and the response to influenza vaccination and other vaccines, as well as links between other factors, such as social support and personality, and vaccination-induced protection against disease. There are several ways the vaccination response can be used to understand more about how stress influences immunity. In addition, specific types of stress and other factors that influence our immune response appear to differ across different populations, which emphasises the importance of taking a life course approach to studying these relationships.
    Social and Personality Psychology Compass 09/2011; 5(9). DOI:10.1111/j.1751-9004.2011.00378.x
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Salivary immunoglobulin A (IgA) is used as an immunity marker, as saliva can be easily collected, noninvasively with little stress. However, several saliva collection methods can be used. Our comparison between samples collected using different methods demonstrated that the salivary IgA secretion rate in samples collected using an aspiration method was significantly correlated with that in samples collected using a swab method. Moreover, the significant circadian variation in salivary IgA secretion rate in the aspirated saliva suggested that the aspiration method does not suppress salivary IgA secretion rate variability compared with the swab method. Therefore, the aspiration method should be considered as the preferable saliva collection method.
    07/2013; 32(3):107-112. DOI:10.12938/bmfh.32.107

Full-text

Download
109 Downloads
Available from
May 22, 2014