Early Life Stress Experience Used by Brain to Prepare for Later Challenges

by Kathy Jones on  April 9, 2013 at 8:21 PM Lifestyle News   - G J E 4
Stress circuits in the brain are capable of self-tuning following a single stress, researchers at the University of Calgary's Hotchkiss Brain Institute have shown.
 Early Life Stress Experience Used by Brain to Prepare for Later Challenges
Early Life Stress Experience Used by Brain to Prepare for Later Challenges

These findings demonstrate that the brain uses stress experience during early life to prepare and optimize for subsequent challenges.

Jaideep Bains, PhD, and colleagues were able to show the existence of unique time windows following brief stress challenges during which learning is either increased or decreased.

By manipulating specific cellular pathways, they uncovered the key players responsible for learning in stress circuits in an animal model.

"These new findings demonstrate that systems thought to be 'hardwired' in the brain, are in fact flexible, particularly early in life," said Bains, a professor in the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology.

"Using this information, researchers can now ask questions about the precise cellular and molecular links between early life stress and stress vulnerability or resilience later in life," he added.

Stress vulnerability, or increased sensitivity to stress, has been implicated in numerous health conditions including cardiovascular disease, obesity, diabetes and depression. Although these studies used animal models, similar mechanisms mediate disease progression in humans.

"Our observations provide an important foundation for designing more effective preventative and therapeutic strategies that mitigate the effects of stress and meet society's health challenges," he said.

Their discoveries have been published in the online edition of Nature Neuroscience, one of the world's top neuroscience journals.

Source: ANI

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Granted you can have too much stress surely you can have too little, sensitivity to stress probably indicates sensitivity to something being wrong. Leaders in competitive organisations are usually insensitive to stress [Biosociology of Dominance and Deference(Mazur]) probably why most of their decisions are unwise/dangerous. If we want to survive as a species maybe we should start listening to stressed people, maybe they're the canaries in the coalmine.
DavidNicholls Wednesday, April 10, 2013

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