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Social Isolation and Health

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Air date: Thursday, June 02, 2011, 3:00:00 PM
Time displayed is Eastern Time, Washington DC Local
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Category: BSSR - Behavioral and Social Sciences
Runtime: 01:23:09
Description: The Matilda White Riley Lecture

Social species, by definition, form organizations that extend beyond the individual. These structures evolved hand in hand with behavioral, neural, hormonal, cellular, and genetic mechanisms to support them because the consequent social behaviors helped these organisms survive, reproduce, and care for offspring sufficiently long that they too reproduced, thereby ensuring their genetic legacy.

Social isolation represents a lens through which to investigate these behavioral, neural, hormonal, cellular, and genetic mechanisms. Evidence from human and nonhuman animal studies indicates that isolation heightens sensitivity to social threats (predator evasion) and motivates the renewal of social connections. The effects of perceived isolation in humans share much in common with the effects of experimental manipulations of isolation in nonhuman social species: increased tonic sympathetic tonus and HPA activation, and decreased inflammatory control, immunity, sleep salubrity, and expression of genes regulating glucocorticoid responses. Together, these effects contribute to higher rates of morbidity and mortality in older adults.
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NLM Title: Social isolation and health [electronic resource] / John T. Cacioppo.
Series: Matilda White Riley lecture
Author: Cacioppo, John T.
National Institutes of Health (U.S.)
Publisher:
Other Title(s): Matilda White Riley lecture
Abstract: (CIT): The Matilda White Riley Lecture Social species, by definition, form organizations that extend beyond the individual. These structures evolved hand in hand with behavioral, neural, hormonal, cellular, and genetic mechanisms to support them because the consequent social behaviors helped these organisms survive, reproduce, and care for offspring sufficiently long that they too reproduced, thereby ensuring their genetic legacy. Social isolation represents a lens through which to investigate these behavioral, neural, hormonal, cellular, and genetic mechanisms. Evidence from human and nonhuman animal studies indicates that isolation heightens sensitivity to social threats (predator evasion) and motivates the renewal of social connections. The effects of perceived isolation in humans share much in common with the effects of experimental manipulations of isolation in nonhuman social species: increased tonic sympathetic tonus and HPA activation, and decreased inflammatory control, immunity, sleep salubrity, and expression of genes regulating glucocorticoid responses. Together, these effects contribute to higher rates of morbidity and mortality in older adults.
Subjects: Social Isolation
Publication Types: Lectures
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NLM Classification: BF 575.L7
NLM ID: 101565214
CIT Live ID: 10721
Permanent link: http://videocast.nih.gov/launch.asp?16692