Background: The hypothalamicpituitaryadrenal (HPA) axis responds to several acute or chronic environmental stessors, including those of social stress.
Objective and hypotheses: To assess the HPA axis acute response during mental stress and mobile phone call exposure in healthy adolescents through salivary cortisol measurements and to investigate the modulatory effect of baseline biochemical or low-inflammation markers during this response.
Method: Twenty healthy children aged 1114 (12.5±1.5) years, recruited in their schools, entered this cross sectional study, after parental informed consent was obtained. Trier Social Stress Test for Children (TSST-C: 5 minutes oral task followed by 5 min arithmetic task) was performed and salivary cortisol samples were taken at baseline (time #1), immediately after the oral (time #2) and the arithmetic (time #3) task and after a three minute long mobile phone call (time #4). Serum cortisol, ACTH, TSH, T3, T4, insulin, glucose and high sensitivity C Reactive Protein (hsCRP) levels were also measured at baseline.
Results: Salivary cortisol levels suppressed significantly only between baseline and after the mobile phone call (time #4). Baseline blood hsCRP levels correlated to baseline (time #1) and post mental stress (time #2, 3) salivary cortisol levels, but not after the mobile phone call. Baseline blood cortisol levels significantly correlated to the salivary cortisol level assessed after the mobile phone use. No correlation was observed between baseline ACTH, TSH, T3, T4, insulin, glucose and salivary cortisol levels of any time sample.
Conclusion: In adolescents, acute salivary cortisol response to mental stress and/or during a mobile phone call was predicted by baseline hsCRP and serum cortisol levels, with different effect over time: hsCRP effect weakened with time, whereas, serum cortisol effect increased.
10 - 12 Sep 2016
European Society for Paediatric Endocrinology