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Unravelling stress susceptibility and resilience: factors contributing to HPA-axis functioning

Lok, R (2014) Unravelling stress susceptibility and resilience: factors contributing to HPA-axis functioning. Master's Thesis / Essay, Biology.

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Since the discovery of the HPA-axis (1936) it has become increasingly more clear that the HPA-axis plays a defining role in stress phenotypes, determining (partially) wether someone is stress susceptible or resilient. The aim of this review is to investigate which aspects of the HPA-axis contribute to these stress phenotypes and can account for the differences between stress susceptibility and resilience. Genetic polymorphism, influencing corticotrophin releasing hormone receptor (CRHR), mineralocorticoid receptor (MR) and glucocorticoid receptor (GR) functions, have been identified to contribute to both stress susceptibility and resilience. Further research suggested that environmental stressors could play a significant role in influencing stress phenotypes. In certain time frames (prenatal, early life and adolescent), environmental stress is thought to have the greatest impact on a permanent stress phenotype. These environmental stressors have been shown to alter epigenetic factors regulating HPA-axis activity. There is a delicate balance between the stress susceptible and resilient phenotype. A complex interaction between genotype, environmental factors and epigenetics determine whether an individual becomes more stress susceptible or resilient. Future research should focus on inducing a stress resilient phenotype using this knowledge.

Item Type: Thesis (Master's Thesis / Essay)
Degree programme: Biology
Thesis type: Master's Thesis / Essay
Language: English
Date Deposited: 15 Feb 2018 07:59
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2018 07:59

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