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Neuroticism and conscientiousness are associated with cortisol diurnal profiles in adults-Role of positive and negative affect


Nater, U M; Hoppmann, C; Klumb, P L (2010). Neuroticism and conscientiousness are associated with cortisol diurnal profiles in adults-Role of positive and negative affect. Psychoneuroendocrinology, 35(10):1573-1577 .

Abstract

A substantial body of research on the pathophysiology of negative health outcomes has focused on dysregulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. Maladaptive and adaptive personality features have been discussed to be associated with health outcomes. In the current study, we investigated the association of neuroticism (N) and conscientiousness (C) with diurnal cortisol levels in 102 working parents (M age=37 years; 50% female). Further, we examined the impact of daily positive and negative affect on this association. During a 6-day time-sampling phase, cortisol was measured at awakening and after that within intervals of 3h. We found a positive association of N with cortisol levels throughout the measurement period, but no association of C with daily cortisol. When accounting for daily positive and negative affect, individuals with high scores on C displayed reductions in daily cortisol concentrations that were driven by positive affect compared to individuals with low C scores. No such association emerged for N. Our findings might further elucidate the role of personality in HPA axis regulation and improve our understanding of the association of endocrine states and health outcomes.

A substantial body of research on the pathophysiology of negative health outcomes has focused on dysregulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. Maladaptive and adaptive personality features have been discussed to be associated with health outcomes. In the current study, we investigated the association of neuroticism (N) and conscientiousness (C) with diurnal cortisol levels in 102 working parents (M age=37 years; 50% female). Further, we examined the impact of daily positive and negative affect on this association. During a 6-day time-sampling phase, cortisol was measured at awakening and after that within intervals of 3h. We found a positive association of N with cortisol levels throughout the measurement period, but no association of C with daily cortisol. When accounting for daily positive and negative affect, individuals with high scores on C displayed reductions in daily cortisol concentrations that were driven by positive affect compared to individuals with low C scores. No such association emerged for N. Our findings might further elucidate the role of personality in HPA axis regulation and improve our understanding of the association of endocrine states and health outcomes.

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31 citations in Web of Science®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Date:November 2010
Deposited On:02 Nov 2010 14:27
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 14:15
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0306-4530
Publisher DOI:10.1016/j.psyneuen.2010.02.017
PubMed ID:20299157
Permanent URL: http://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-35986

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