Repressive coping and blood measures of disease risk: Lipids and endocrine and immunological responses to a laboratory stressor

Steven D Barger, Elizabeth A. Bachen, Anna L. Marsland, Stephen B. Manuck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

25 Scopus citations


Relations between repressive coping and a variety of health-related variables, including insulin, lipids, catecholamines, and cellular immune components, were investigated in a laboratory study of acute stress among a sample of healthy male college students (N = 83). Compared to nonrepressors, at baseline, repressers had fewer numbers of circulating CD4 (T-helper) cells, greater numbers of natural killer (NK) cells, lower high-density lipoprotein (HDL), a higher total/HDL cholesterol ratio, and higher fasting insulin levels. In response to an acute laboratory stressor (Stroop Color Word Conflict Test), repressors demonstrated an attenuated increase in the number of circulating NK cells compared to nonrepressors. Confounds such as physical activity, age, and smoking were unrelated to the dependent measures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1619-1638
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Applied Social Psychology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2000


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)
  • Social Psychology

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