Stress exposure and alterations in the response to stress are linked to mood disorder. The hypothalamic–pituitary– adrenal (HPA) axis is an important hormonal response system to stress. We are currently exploring relationships between HPA-axis function and brain chemistry in women.
By expanding on our understanding of the stress response in healthy individuals we also hope to be able to shed light on its role in mood disorders. We have identified genetic variation associated with HPA-axis response in healthy young adults. We also found that HPA-axis response correlates with circulating sex hormones in healthy individuals.
- Lee RS, Mahon PB, Zandi PP, McCaul ME, Yang X, Bali U, Wand GS. (2018) DNA methylation and sex-specific expression of FKBP5 as correlates of one-month bedtime cortisol levels in healthy individuals. Psychoneuroendocrinology, 97:164-173. PMID: 30036794
- Mahon PB, Zandi PP, Potash JB, Nestadt G, Wand GS. (2013) Genetic association of FKBP5 and CRHR1 with cortisol response to acute psychosocial stress in healthy adults. Psychopharmacology (Berl), 227(2):231-41. PMID: 23274505; PMCID: PMC3628278.
- Stephens MA, Mahon PB, McCaul ME, Wand GS. (2016) Hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis response to acute psychosocial stress: Effects of biological sex and circulating sex hormones. Psychoneuroendocrinology, 66:47-55. PMID: 26773400; PMCID: PMC4788592.