Aging and hypercortisolism may be associated with alterations of stress- induced hormone release. We therefore studied 20 normal controls of two different age groups (< 30 and > 60 yr of age) and 20 age-matched patients with major depression; baseline ACTH and cortisol secretion (between 1400 and 1700) as well as blood pressure and heart rate and their responses to a 45- min lasting signal detection task (1705-1750) were determined. No difference in basal hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) system activity between young and older healthy controls was noted. The cognitive challenge resulted in an increase in stress-induced hormonal secretion that was greater in the older controls than in their young counterparts. Basal hypercortisolemia and, at baseline, heart rates were higher in depressed patients, regardless of age. Blood pressure was elevated in older healthy controls as well as depressed patients. With the exception of the young depressed patients, all groups responded with an increase of the cardiovascular parameters during stress.
|Journal||American Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology|
|Issue number||4 37-4|
|Publication status||Published - 1995|
Research Areas and Centers
- Academic Focus: Center for Brain, Behavior and Metabolism (CBBM)