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Biologic effects of stress and bonding in mother-infant pairs.
Int J Psychiatry Med. 2016 04; 51(3):246-57.IJ

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

Maternal stress in humans influences behavior of children and can be assessed using biological markers. Mothers and their one-month-old infants were recruited from an existing study to examine baseline maternal serum oxytocin and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis response to infant blood heel stick stress as measured by salivary cortisol in the dyads. Objectives were to explore (1) relationships between mother and infant cortisol levels, (2) gender differences in infant biologic cortisol response, and (3) the association of cortisol levels in the dyads and maternal oxytocin levels

METHODS

Forty-two mother-infant dyads provided biologic samples and self-report data. Maternal oxytocin samples were obtained. Initial salivary cortisol was assessed in both the mother and infant, followed by a heel stick blood draw. Twenty minutes later, salivary cortisol was collected again from dyads.

RESULTS

Self-report measures were negative for depression and risk for childhood neglect. Although oxytocin and baseline cortisol in the infants was higher in mothers that did some breast-feeding, there was no statistically significant difference (p = 0.2 and p = 0.1, respectively). Analyses showed (a) higher baseline cortisol in mothers was related to higher baseline cortisol in infants (p ≤ 0.0001), (b) following the stressor, female infants had a larger positive change in cortisol, after adjusting for baseline cortisol (p = 0.045), and (c) there was no relationship between dyad cortisol levels and maternal oxytocin.

CONCLUSIONS

Maternal and infant biologic stress measures are related. Female infants have a larger hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal response to a blood draw stressor as measured by salivary cortisol than male infants.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Division of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, Medical University of South Carolina, SC, USA spratte@musc.edu.School of Medicine, Medical University of South Carolina, SC, USA.Department of Public Health Sciences, Medical University of South Carolina, SC, USA.Division of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, Medical University of South Carolina, SC, USA.Department of Public Health Sciences, Medical University of South Carolina, SC, USA.Division of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Medical University of South Carolina, SC, USA.DLSI, Medical University of South Carolina, SC, USA.Department of Pediatrics, Medical University of South Carolina, SC, USA.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

27284117

Citation

Spratt, Eve G., et al. "Biologic Effects of Stress and Bonding in Mother-infant Pairs." International Journal of Psychiatry in Medicine, vol. 51, no. 3, 2016, pp. 246-57.
Spratt EG, Marsh C, Wahlquist AE, et al. Biologic effects of stress and bonding in mother-infant pairs. Int J Psychiatry Med. 2016;51(3):246-57.
Spratt, E. G., Marsh, C., Wahlquist, A. E., Papa, C. E., Nietert, P. J., Brady, K. T., Herbert, T. L., & Wagner, C. (2016). Biologic effects of stress and bonding in mother-infant pairs. International Journal of Psychiatry in Medicine, 51(3), 246-57. https://doi.org/10.1177/0091217416652382
Spratt EG, et al. Biologic Effects of Stress and Bonding in Mother-infant Pairs. Int J Psychiatry Med. 2016;51(3):246-57. PubMed PMID: 27284117.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Biologic effects of stress and bonding in mother-infant pairs. AU - Spratt,Eve G, AU - Marsh,Courtney, AU - Wahlquist,Amy E, AU - Papa,Carrie E, AU - Nietert,Paul J, AU - Brady,Kathleen T, AU - Herbert,Teri Lynn, AU - Wagner,Carol, PY - 2016/6/11/entrez PY - 2016/6/11/pubmed PY - 2018/1/30/medline KW - HPA axis KW - cortisol KW - gender KW - infants KW - oxytocin KW - parent–child relations KW - psychological KW - stress SP - 246 EP - 57 JF - International journal of psychiatry in medicine JO - Int J Psychiatry Med VL - 51 IS - 3 N2 - OBJECTIVE: Maternal stress in humans influences behavior of children and can be assessed using biological markers. Mothers and their one-month-old infants were recruited from an existing study to examine baseline maternal serum oxytocin and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis response to infant blood heel stick stress as measured by salivary cortisol in the dyads. Objectives were to explore (1) relationships between mother and infant cortisol levels, (2) gender differences in infant biologic cortisol response, and (3) the association of cortisol levels in the dyads and maternal oxytocin levels METHODS: Forty-two mother-infant dyads provided biologic samples and self-report data. Maternal oxytocin samples were obtained. Initial salivary cortisol was assessed in both the mother and infant, followed by a heel stick blood draw. Twenty minutes later, salivary cortisol was collected again from dyads. RESULTS: Self-report measures were negative for depression and risk for childhood neglect. Although oxytocin and baseline cortisol in the infants was higher in mothers that did some breast-feeding, there was no statistically significant difference (p = 0.2 and p = 0.1, respectively). Analyses showed (a) higher baseline cortisol in mothers was related to higher baseline cortisol in infants (p ≤ 0.0001), (b) following the stressor, female infants had a larger positive change in cortisol, after adjusting for baseline cortisol (p = 0.045), and (c) there was no relationship between dyad cortisol levels and maternal oxytocin. CONCLUSIONS: Maternal and infant biologic stress measures are related. Female infants have a larger hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal response to a blood draw stressor as measured by salivary cortisol than male infants. SN - 1541-3527 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/27284117/Biologic_effects_of_stress_and_bonding_in_mother_infant_pairs_ L2 - https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/0091217416652382?url_ver=Z39.88-2003&rfr_id=ori:rid:crossref.org&rfr_dat=cr_pub=pubmed DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -