Stress and Vulnerability to Brain Damage

Cheryl Conrad, R. L. Wright, K. J. McLaughlin

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

The hippocampus is intimately sensitive to stress hormones and responds to stress through changes in structure, neurochemistry, and excitability. Both acute and chronic stress can compromise the hippocampus: acute stress exacerbates hippocampal damage when combined with a metabolic challenge, while chronic stress directly produces hippocampal dendritic retraction. Neurons expressing dendritic retraction may inadvertently increase the risk for compromised hippocampal health. Factors influencing hippocampal health include genetics, stress exposure during development, gender, and coping strategies. Understanding these risks and taking steps to avoid or attenuate the impact of chronic stress can help mitigate the potential negative effects on the body and brain.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of Neuroscience
PublisherElsevier Ltd.
Pages481-488
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)9780080450469
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2009

Keywords

  • Anxiety
  • Coping
  • Corticosterone
  • Development
  • Glucocorticoids
  • Hippocampus
  • Hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis
  • Maternal care
  • Plasticity
  • Predisposition
  • Sex differences
  • Stress
  • Stress response

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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