Salivary nerve growth factor (sNGF) has recently been shown to respond to psychosocial stress, but little is known about how individual differences in this neurotrophic marker relate to stress vulnerability vs. resilience. This study followed up on these initial findings by examining sNGF responses to interpersonal stress in relation to both well-being and state/trait factors that determine the way a person approaches and is impacted by stress. Young adults (n=. 40) gave 5 saliva samples over the course of a laboratory session that involved an interpersonal conflict stressor, and all samples were assayed for sNGF. Participants also completed self-report measures of global well-being, stress appraisals before and following the conflict, and agency. Greater sNGF reactivity to conflict related to stronger appraisals of coping ability and agency. Post-conflict sNGF recovery related to lower anticipatory stress appraisals, and to higher agency and well-being. These results support the idea that dynamic sNGF responses are adaptive. Implications for the potential role of the neurotrophic system in stress resilience are discussed.
- Interpersonal conflict
- Nerve growth factor
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
- Behavioral Neuroscience