Author Archives: Nederhof E, van Oort FV, Bouma EM, Laceulle OM, Oldehinkel AJ, Ormel J

Predicting mental disorders from hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis functioning: a 3-year follow-up in the TRAILS study.

Predicting mental disorders from hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis functioning: a 3-year follow-up in the TRAILS study.

Psychol Med. 2015 Mar 19;:1-10

Authors: Nederhof E, van Oort FV, Bouma EM, Laceulle OM, Oldehinkel AJ, Ormel J

Abstract
BACKGROUND: Hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis functioning, with cortisol as its major output hormone, has been presumed to play a key role in the development of psychopathology. Predicting affective disorders from diurnal cortisol levels has been inconclusive, whereas the predictive value of stress-induced cortisol concentrations has not been studied before. The aim of this study was to predict mental disorders over a 3-year follow-up from awakening and stress-induced cortisol concentrations.
METHOD: Data were used from 561 TRAILS (TRacking Adolescents’ Individual Lives Survey) participants, a prospective cohort study of Dutch adolescents. Saliva samples were collected at awakening and half an hour later and during a social stress test at age 16. Mental disorders were assessed 3 years later with the Composite International Diagnostic Interview (CIDI).
RESULTS: A lower cortisol awakening response (CAR) marginally significantly predicted new disorders [odds ratio (OR) 0.77, p = 0.06]. A flat recovery slope predicted disorders with a first onset after the experimental session (OR 1.27, p = 0.04). Recovery revealed smaller, non-significant ORs when predicting new onset affective or anxiety disorders, major depressive disorder, or dependence disorders in three separate models, corrected for all other new onsets.
CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that delayed recovery and possibly reduced CAR are indicators of a more general risk status and may be part of a common pathway to psychopathology. Delayed recovery suggests that individuals at risk for mental disorders perceived the social stress test as less controllable and less predictable.

PMID: 25786334 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]

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