Infoscience

Journal article

Behavioral factors in stress-induced immunomodulation

Individual differences in the exploratory response to novelty were found to be related with the vulnerability to develop stress-induced immunological alterations. We studied the effect of exposure to inescapable shock on antibody formation against sheep red blood cells (SRBC) in rats selected according to their locomotor activity in a novel situation. Interestingly, antibody titers were only enhanced in shocked animals with the highest locomotor activity. These results emphasize the importance of taking into account individual differences for the study of the mechanisms involved in stress-induced immunomodulation, suggesting a behavioral procedure (novelty reactions) to deal with individual variability in the effects of stress on the immune system.

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