The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

Size at birth and autonomic function during psychological stress

Record type: Article

Small size at birth is associated with exaggerated blood pressure responses to psychological stressors, which increase the risk of developing sustained hypertension in adult life. Explanatory mechanisms for this association are not well characterized. We investigated the hypothesis that an adverse fetal environment, reflected by small size at birth, persistently alters autonomic nervous system and baroreflex control of cardiovascular function, resulting in exaggerated blood pressure and heart rate responses to stressors. Men and women from an Australian prospective cohort study underwent a series of 3 psychological stressors (Stroop, mirror-tracing, and speech) while their blood pressure was recorded continuously using a Portapres. Indices of autonomic function were derived using spectrum analysis (wavelet packet transform), and baroreflex function was estimated using an adaptive autoregressive model. We found that women who were small at birth demonstrated increased levels of low-frequency blood pressure variability at rest (r=-0.28; P<0.05) and during stress (r=-0.42; P<0.001), reduced levels of high-frequency heart period variability (r=0.22; P<0.05), and reduced baroreflex sensitivity (r=0.34; P<0.01). These findings were not present in the men. This study provides evidence that markers of impaired fetal growth are related to autonomic cardiovascular control involving modulation of both sympathetic and parasympathetic function but in a sex-specific manner. We also provide the first human evidence of a relationship between size at birth and baroreflex function.

Full text not available from this repository.

Citation

Jones, Alexander, Beda, Alessandro, Ward, Alexandra M.V., Osmond, Clive, Phillips, David I.W., Moore, Vivienne M. and Simpson, David M. (2007) Size at birth and autonomic function during psychological stress Hypertension, 49, (3), pp. 548-555. (doi:10.1161/01.HYP.0000257196.13485.9b).

More information

Published date: March 2007
Additional Information: Published online before print January 22, 2007
Keywords: baroreflex, epidemiology, fetal, physiology, stress

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 43498
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/43498
ISSN: 0194-911X
PURE UUID: 799445a8-654e-4844-9514-9a18fc542e8f

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 31 Jan 2007
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 15:18

Export record

Altmetrics

Contributors

Author: Alexander Jones
Author: Alessandro Beda
Author: Alexandra M.V. Ward
Author: Clive Osmond
Author: David I.W. Phillips
Author: Vivienne M. Moore

University divisions


Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton: eprints@soton.ac.uk

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/cgi/oai2

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.

×