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ERIC Number: EJ1079402
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Nov
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0012-1649
Additive Contributions of Childhood Adversity and Recent Stressors to Inflammation at Midlife: Findings from the MIDUS Study
Hostinar, Camelia E.; Lachman, Margie E.; Mroczek, Daniel K.; Seeman, Teresa E.; Miller, Gregory E.
Developmental Psychology, v51 n11 p1630-1644 Nov 2015
We examined the joint contributions of self-reported adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and recent life events (RLEs) to inflammation at midlife, by testing 3 competing theoretical models: stress generation, stress accumulation, and early life stress sensitization. We aimed to identify potential mediators between adversity and inflammation. Participants were 1,180 middle-aged and older adults from the Midlife in the United States (MIDUS) Biomarker Project (M age = 57.3 years, SD = 11.5; 56% female). A composite measure of inflammation was derived from 5 biomarkers: serum levels of C-reactive protein, interleukin-6, fibrinogen, E-selectin, and ICAM-1. Participants provided self-report data regarding ACEs, RLEs, current lifestyle indices (cigarette smoking, alcohol consumption, physical exercise, waist circumference), current depressive symptoms, and demographic/biomedical characteristics. We also used indices of hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenocortical outflow (12-hr urinary cortisol) and sympathetic nervous system output (12-hr urinary norepinephrine and epinephrine). Analyses indicated that ACEs and RLEs were independently associated with higher levels of inflammation, controlling for each other's effects. Their interaction was not significant. The results were consistent with the hypothesis that associations between ACEs and inflammation were mediated through higher urinary norepinephrine output, greater waist circumference, smoking, and lower levels of exercise, whereas higher waist circumference and more smoking partially mediated the association between RLEs and inflammation. In support of the stress accumulation model, ACEs and RLEs had unique and additive contributions to inflammation at midlife, with no evidence of synergistic effects. Results also suggested that norepinephrine output and lifestyle indices may help explain how prior stressors foster inflammation at midlife.
American Psychological Association. Journals Department, 750 First Street NE, Washington, DC 20002. Tel: 800-374-2721; Tel: 202-336-5510; Fax: 202-336-5502; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Institute on Aging (DHHS/NIH); Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) (NIH); National Institute on Drug Abuse (DHHS/PHS)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale
Grant or Contract Numbers: P01AG020166; F32HD078048; R01HD058502; R01AG018436; P30DA027827