Individual differences in early adolescents’ latent trait cortisol: Interaction of early adversity and 5-HTTLPR

Frances R. Chen, Catherine B. Stroud, Suzanne Vrshek-Schallhorn, Leah Doane, Douglas A. Granger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

The present study aimed to examine the interaction of 5-HTTLPR and early adversity on trait-like levels of cortisol. A community sample of 117 early adolescent girls (M age = 12.39 years) provided DNA samples for 5-HTTLPR genotyping, and saliva samples for assessing cortisol 3 times a day (waking, 30 min post-waking, and bedtime) over a three-day period. Latent trait cortisol (LTC) was modeled using the first 2 samples of each day. Early adversity was assessed with objective contextual stress interviews with adolescents and their mothers. A significant 5-HTTLPR × early adversity interaction indicated that greater early adversity was associated with lower LTC levels, but only among individuals with either L/L or S/L genotype. Findings suggest that serotonergic genetic variation may influence the impact of early adversity on individual differences in HPA-axis regulation. Future research should explore whether this interaction contributes to the development of psychopathology through HPA axis functioning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8-15
Number of pages8
JournalBiological Psychology
Volume129
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2017

Keywords

  • 5-HTTLPR
  • Adolescence
  • Early adversity
  • Latent trait cortisol
  • Salivary cortisol

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology

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