Johannes Gjerstad

Johannes Gjerstad
University of Oslo · Department of Biosciences

Prof., dr. scient.

About

85
Publications
9,650
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1,567
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Introduction
Johannes Gjerstad currently works at the Department of Biosciences, University of Oslo. Johannes does research in Genetics, Molecular Biology and Neuroscience.
Additional affiliations
June 2011 - present
University of Oslo
Position
  • Professor (Full)

Publications

Publications (85)
Article
Full-text available
Objectives Several studies show that severe social stressors, e.g., in the form of exposure to workplace bullying in humans, is associated with negative mental health effects such as depression and anxiety among those targeted. However, the understanding of the underlying biological mechanisms that may explain the relationship between exposure to b...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives Previous findings suggest that abusive supervision, i.e., subordinates’ perceptions of their supervisor’s behaviours as hostile (excluding physical aggression), may increase the risk of health complaints. In addition, recent data suggest that the FKBP5 genotype rs9470080 important in the regulation of cortisol release, influences the sam...
Article
Full-text available
Workplace bullying is, by definition, a gradually escalating process, theorized to occur from psychosocial stressors when there is a lack of management intervention in escalating conflicts, and a lack of fair and robust conflict management procedures in the organization. Based on national probability survey data gathered in 2015–2016 from the offic...
Article
Full-text available
Objective Workplace bullying has been established as a significant correlate of sleep problems. However, little is known regarding the causal direction between bullying and sleep. The aim of this study was to examine temporal relationships between bullying and symptoms of insomnia. Methods Reciprocal and prospective associations between exposure t...
Article
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Objective: Previous findings suggest that exposure to social stress in the form of abusive supervision may increase the risk of anxiety disorders. In the present study, we examined the link between abusive supervision, the CRHR1 genotype and anxiety. Methods: The data was collected through a national survey drawn from the National Central Employee...
Article
Full-text available
Previous findings suggest that exposure to social stress in the form of abusive supervision may increase the risk of musculoskeletal disorders. In the present study, we examined the link between abusive supervision, the CRHR1 genotype and spinal pain. The data were collected through a national survey drawn from the National Central Employee Registe...
Article
Objective: Leadership styles can influence subordinates' health. We investigated how the gene encoding the Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) enzyme (i.e. COMT rs4680 Val158Met) influenced effects of abusive supervision and transformational leadership on subordinates' headache and neck pain. Methods: Multiple group structural equation modeling...
Article
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Objective In the present study we examined the potential association between age, gender, the genetic variant FKBP5 rs9470080 and subjective health complaints. Methods The data were collected through a three-wave nationally representative survey of 1060 Norwegian employees drawn from the Norwegian Central Employee Register by Statistics Norway. Th...
Article
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Background: Previous studies suggest that persistent exposure to social stress in mammals may be associated with multiple physiological effects. Here, we examine the effects of social stress in rats, i.e. repeated social defeat, on behavior, hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA)-axis and immune system. Methods: A resident-intruder paradigm, where...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background Previous studies suggest that persistent exposure to social stress in mammals may be associated with multiple physiological effects. Here, we examine the effects of social stress in rats, i.e. repeated social defeat, on behavior, hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA)-axis and immune system. Methods A resident-intruder paradigm, where an i...
Article
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Objective: Earlier studies documenting the effect of candidate genes on recovery have seldom taken into consideration the impact of emotional distress. Thus, we aimed to assess the modifying effect of emotional distress on genetic variability as a predictor for pain recovery in lumbar radicular (LRP) and low back pain (LBP). Results: The study p...
Article
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Background: Previous studies suggest that regulatory microRNAs (miRs) may modulate neuro-inflammatory processes. The purpose of the present study was to examine the role of miR-17 following intervertebral disc herniation. Methods: In a cohort of 97 patients with leg pain and disc herniation verified on MRI, we investigated the association betwee...
Article
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Prolonged exposure to bullying behaviors may give rise to symptoms such as anxiety, depression and chronic pain. Earlier data suggest that these symptoms often are associated with stress-induced low-grade systemic inflammation. Here, using data from both animals and humans, we examined the moderating role of microRNAs (miRNAs, miRs) in this process...
Article
Full-text available
Several lines of evidence show that systematic exposure to negative social acts at the workplace i.e., workplace bullying, results in symptoms of depression and anxiety among those targeted. However, little is known about the association between bullying, inflammatory genes and sleep problems. In the present study, we examined the indirect associat...
Article
The aim of this study was to determine the direction of associations between perceived leadership styles of an immediate leader and state anxiety among subordinates using time-lagged data from a large and heterogeneous probability sample of Norwegian employees. It was hypothesised that high levels of transformational leadership would be associated...
Article
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Introduction Lumbar radicular pain after disk herniation is associated with local release of many inflammatory molecules from nucleus pulposus (NP) cells leaking out of the intervertebral disk. Here, we have used a rat model to investigate the role of epiregulin (EREG), a member of the epidermal growth factor (EGF) family, in this process. Methods...
Article
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Stressors in the work environment and individual dispositions among targets have been established separately as antecedents and risk factors of workplace bullying. However, few studies have examined these stressors in conjunction in order to determine personal dispositions among targets as possible moderators in the work stressor–bullying relations...
Article
Study design: A prospective observational study with translation and psychometric analyses of a questionnaire. Objective: Cross-cultural adaptation of the Short-Form McGill Pain Questionnaire-2 into Norwegian. Summary of background data: The different versions of the McGill Pain Questionnaire (MPQ) have been important and influential tools for...
Article
Background: Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) is one of the most important causes of disability among adolescents while limited knowledge exists on genetic determinants underlying disease pathophysiology. Methods: We analyzed deregulated immune-gene modules using Pathifier software on whole blood gene expression data (29 CFS patients, 18 controls)....
Article
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Objective To examine the impact of demographic, clinical, and genetic factors as well as herniated discs on 5-year development of disc degeneration in the lumbar spine, and to investigate associations between changes in lumbar degenerative findings and pain. Materials and methodsIn 144 patients with lumbar radicular pain or low back pain, we scored...
Article
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The placebo effect is considered the core example of mind-body interactions. However, individual differences produce large placebo response variability in both healthy volunteers and patients. The placebo response in pain, placebo analgesia, may be dependent on both the opioid system and the dopaminergic system. Previous studies suggest that geneti...
Article
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Background: There is a lack of published data on the association between alcohol consumption and health and well-being in working populations. Aims: To determine how levels of alcohol consumption are associated with psychological distress, somatic complaints, sleep, and job satisfaction in the Norwegian workforce. Methods: Survey questionnaire...
Article
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Background: Although alcohol use can have detrimental effects for employees, little is known about the prevalence, distribution, and correlates in the Norwegian workforce. Aims: To determine the overall and the work-related prevalence of weekly alcohol use, and to establish associations between psychosocial work stressors and alcohol use among Norw...
Article
Objective: The association between exposure to bullying at work and subsequent pain reports is relatively well-established, but few studies have examined possible moderators of this relationship. As gender is a known risk factor for pain, with women reporting pain levels of higher intensity and longer duration, a possible gender difference in the...
Article
Background and aims Matrix metalloproteinase 9 (MMP9) is an enzyme that may affect degradation of several extracellular matrix (ECM) components in the pelvic ligaments during pregnancy. Previous studies indicate that genetic variations in the gene encoding MMP9 may affect the enzymatic activity. One such genetic variant is a single nucleotide polym...
Article
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Background: Low back-related leg pain with nerve root involvement is conceptually regarded as a neuropathic condition. However, it is uncertain to what extent patients with this condition can be formally classified with neuropathic pain. Method: First, we used the 2016 revision of the IASP Special Interest Group on Neuropathic Pain (NeuPSIG) gra...
Article
Objectives Long-term exposure to systematic negative acts at work, usually labeled workplace bullying, is a prevalent problem at many workplaces. The adverse effects of such exposure may range from psychological symptoms, such as depression and anxiety to somatic ailments like cardiovascular disease and musculoskeletal complaints. In this study, we...
Article
Aims Previous studies have suggested that many inflammatory cytokines, including interleukin (IL)-1α, may be associated with lumbar radicular pain after disc herniation. In the present study, we examined how variability of the IL-1α gene affects pain intensity and the pressure pain threshold (PPT) in patients with symptomatic disc herniation. Metho...
Article
Full-text available
Research into “workaholism” has substantially increased over the last decade, but little effort has been put into assessing work-related correlates. In the present study, 1,608 employees (Mage = 45.2 years, range = 21–60) participated in a nationally representative cross-sectional survey in Norway examining whether job demands, job control, role am...
Article
Full-text available
In the context of workplace bullying, the ability to defend refers to whether or not a target feels able to deal with those negative behaviors that typically constitute bullying. The aim of this study was to determine whether the perceived ability to defend oneself moderates the association between exposure to bullying behaviors at work and symptom...
Article
Lumbar radicular pain after disc herniation may be associated with release of pro-inflammatory cytokines from nucleus pulposus (NP) tissue. In the present study we examined the role of interferon-γ (IFN-γ) and cluster of differentiation 68 (CD68) in the acute phase of this process. First, in an animal model mimicking the clinical situation after di...
Article
Higher levels of fear have been shown to partly explain individual differences in placebo analgesic responding. The COMT rs4680 Val158Met polymorphism has been associated with both increased placebo analgesia and increased fear-related behavior, in what appears to be inconsistent findings in the literature. The aim of the study was therefore to inv...
Poster
Poster presentation for 6th NeuPSIG Congress, Gothenburg, Sweden, June, 2017. https://osf.io/udjr2/
Preprint
Full-text available
The aim of the present study was to examine if genetic factors associated with pain perception could predict the placebo analgesic response in healthy volunteers. 296 participants (182 women) were randomized to either a placebo group receiving placebo cream with information that the cream was an effective painkiller, or to a natural history group r...
Article
Full-text available
Background Previous findings have demonstrated that lumbar radicular pain after disc herniation may be associated with up-regulation of inflammatory mediators. In the present study we examined the possible role of extracellular microRNAs (miRs) in this process. Methods Single unit recordings, isolation of exosome-like vesicles, electron microscopy,...
Article
Previous data suggest that persistent back pain may be associated with genetic variability. In this study, we assessed the correlation between 8 genetic polymorphisms (VDR, COL11, MMP1, MMP9, IL-1á, IL-1RN, OPRM1, COMT) and pain recovery in patients with low back pain (LBP) and lumbar radicular pain (LRP). In total, 296 patients with LBP or LRP wer...
Article
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Background The aim of the present study was to provide an overview of the literature addressing the role of genetic factors and biomarkers predicting pain recovery in newly diagnosed lumbar radicular pain (LRP) patients. Methods The search was performed in Medline OVID, Embase, PsycInfo and Web of Science (2004 to 2015). Only prospective studies of...
Article
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Background Rodent models highlight the key role of μ-opioid receptor (MOR) signaling in palatable food consumption. In humans, however, the effects of MOR stimulation on eating and food liking remain unclear. Objectives Here, we tested sweet pleasantness experience in humans following MOR drug manipulations. We hypothesized that behaviors regulated...
Article
Clonidine, an α2-adrenergic receptor agonist, decreases circulating norepinephrine and epinephrine, attenuating sympathetic activity. Although catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) metabolizes catecholamines, main effectors of sympathetic function, COMT genetic variation effects on clonidine treatment are unknown. Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is hy...
Article
Full-text available
Earlier studies suggest that lumbar radicular pain following disc herniation may be associated with a local or systemic inflammatory process. In the present study, we investigated the serum inflammatory protein profile of such patients. All 45 patients were recruited from Oslo University Hospital, Ullevål, Norway, during the period 2007–2009. The n...
Data
In the Proximity Extension Assay (PEA) each of the 92 human protein biomarkers were addressed by a pair of oligonucleotide-labeled antibodies. The amount of the proteins was measured by quantitative real-time PCR. The dual recognition DNA-coupled method excluded cross-reactivity in the detection process.
Article
Full-text available
Introduction . Lumbar radicular pain following intervertebral disc herniation may be associated with a local inflammatory response induced by nucleus pulposus (NP) cells. Methods . In anaesthetized Lewis rats, extracellular single unit recordings of wide dynamic range (WDR) neurons in the dorsal horn and qPCR were used to explore the effect of NP a...
Article
Full-text available
Earlier studies have shown that genetic variability in the SLC6A4 gene encoding the serotonin transporter (5-HTT) may be important for the re-uptake of serotonin (5-HT) in the central nervous system. In the present study we investigated how the 5-HTT genotype i.e. the short (S) versus long (L) 5-HTTLPR allele and the SNP rs25531 A > G affect the ph...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) is a common and disabling condition in adolescence with few treatment options. A central feature of CFS is orthostatic intolerance and abnormal autonomic cardiovascular control characterized by sympathetic predominance. We hypothesized that symptoms as well as the underlying pathophysiology might improve...
Article
Earlier studies indicate that lumbar radicular pain after disc herniation may be associated with a local inflammation induced by leakage of nucleus pulposus (NP) into the spinal canal and neuroforamen. In the present study we addressed the role of two interleukins, IL-6 and IL-8 in such long-lasting lumbar radicular pain. All 127 patients were recr...
Article
In the present study, the influence of cytokines on 1-year recovery in lumbar radicular pain was examined. In total, 110 patients with symptomatic lumbar disc herniation were followed for 1 year. Uni- and multivariate linear regression was used to assess the influence of interleukin (IL)-6, IL-8, disc degeneration and endplate changes (Modic change...
Article
Full-text available
Previous studies indicate that lumbar radicular pain following disc herniation may be associated with release of several pro-inflammatory mediators, including interleukin-1 (IL1). In the present study, we examined how genetic variability in IL1A (rs1800587 C>T), IL1B (rs1143627 T>C) and IL1RN (rs2234677 G>A) influenced the clinical outcome the firs...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Cross-sectional studies demonstrate that exposure to bullying in the workplace is positively correlated with self-reported health problems. However, these studies do not provide a basis to draw conclusions on the extent to which bullying leads to increased health problems or whether health problems increase the risk of being bullied. T...
Article
Full-text available
Objective: To examine whether Modic changes influence pain during a 1-year follow-up in patients with lumbar radicular pain. Materials and methods: A total of 243 patients with lumbar radicular pain due to disc herniation were recruited from two hospitals in Norway and followed up at 6 weeks, 6 months, and 12 months. On baseline lumbar magnetic...
Article
Full-text available
Background Earlier observations show that development of persistent pain may be associated with the genetic variability in the gene encoding for the μ-opioid receptor 1, the OPRM1 A118G (rs1799971). The aim of this study was to investigate the association between OPRM1 genotype and subjective health complaints in patients with radicular pain and di...
Article
Previous studies have suggested that many inflammatory cytokines, including interleukin (IL)-1α, may be associated with lumbar radicular pain after disc herniation. In the present study, we examined how variability of the IL-1α gene affects pain intensity and the pressure pain threshold in patients with symptomatic disc herniation. A total of 121 p...
Article
Sciatica following disc herniation may be associated with compression of spinal nerves, but also by inflammatory substances released from the nucleus pulposus (NP) leaking into the spinal canal. Here, in an animal model mimicking clinical intervertebral disc herniation, we investigate the effect of NP on neuronal activity. In anaesthetized Lewis ra...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives: Previous studies indicate that genetic variants in genes encoding proteins like matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) enzymes may affect degeneration of the intervertebral disk. One such genetic variant is a single nucleotide polymorphism insertion in the promoter region of the MMP1 gene, that is, the MMP1 rs1799750 2G allele, which increases...
Article
Neuropathic pain conditions are common after nerve injuries and are suggested to be regulated in part by genetic factors. We have previously demonstrated a strong genetic influence of the rat major histocompatibility complex on development of neuropathic pain behavior after peripheral nerve injury. In order to study if the corresponding human leuko...
Article
The purpose of the present study was to examine how genetic variability in the promoter of the SLC6A4 gene encoding the serotonin transporter (5-HTT) may influence induction of long-term potentiation (LTP). The genotyping of the 53 healthy volunteers was performed by a combination of TaqMan assay and gel electrophoresis. Based on the transcription...
Article
Full-text available
Earlier studies have shown that the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) A118G (rs1799971) in the opioid receptor mu 1 (OPRM1) gene may affect pain sensitivity. In the present study we investigated whether the A118G SNP could predict clinical outcome regarding progression of pain intensity and disability in patients with low back pain and sciatica...
Article
Fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) is an enzyme that metabolizes endocannabinoids and fatty acid amides possibly linked to activation of the opioid system. To examine how this enzyme affects spinal signalling, electrophysiological recordings in the dorsal horn and qPCR on dorsal horn tissue following systemic administration of the FAAH inhibitor URB...
Article
To explore the frequency of polymorphisms in adrenergic cardiovascular control genes in adolescent with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) and the relation of such polymorphisms to cardiovascular variables. DNA from 53 patients with CFS, 12-18 years old, was analysed for five single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the genes catechol-O-methyltransfer...
Article
Although low back pain is usually temporary, some patients do not recover and need treatment. Therefore, it is important to uncover causal and contributing factors. Here we give an overview of recent research on MRI findings and genetic factors that may be important for development of long-lasting low back pain. A non-systematic search in PubMed an...