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Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2000 Jul;279(1):E44-9.

Summation of behavioral and immunological stress: metabolic consequences to the growing mouse.

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Department of Animal Science, Stress Research Unit, University of California, Davis, California 95616, USA.


To address the hypothesis that multiple stressors can have cumulative effects on the individual, we determined the effects of restraint (R) stress (4 h/day for 7 days), immunological (L) stress [lipopolysaccharide (LPS) injection, 0.45 microg/g body wt on days 6 and 7], and R + L (RL) on the growth and energetics of C57Bl/6 male mice. R and L each repeatedly increased (P<0.05) circulating corticosterone (>8 times), but RL caused even greater (>250%, P<0. 05) concentrations of circulating corticosterone than did either stressor alone. Only L and RL increased (P<0.05) circulating interleukin-1beta. Although R, L, and RL impaired growth (>75% below controls, P<0.05), RL reduced growth to a greater extent. All stressors inhibited (P<0.05) lean (>33% below controls) and fat (>120% below controls) energy deposition, and like the effects on growth, combined RL stress inhibited lean and fat energy deposition to a greater extent than did either stressor acting alone. These results demonstrated that the summation of multiple stress results in a cumulative cost to the growing animal.

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