Life events, perceived stress, and antibody response to influenza vaccination in young, healthy adults

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OBJECTIVES: Chronic stress has been associated with impaired response to influenza vaccination in the elderly. This study investigated whether mild, intermittent stress experienced by young, healthy adults has a similar effect. METHODS: Antibody and psychological status were determined prevaccination and 5 weeks and 5 months later; a fourfold increase in antibody to at least one viral strain was considered protective. RESULTS: At 5 months, unprotected participants reported significantly more life events and tended to report more perceived stress than those who were protected. CONCLUSIONS: Psychological stress is detrimental to long-term maintenance of antibody levels following vaccination in young, healthy adults.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)569-572
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Psychosomatic Research
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2003


  • psychosocial stress, psychoneuroimmunology, vaccination