Reverses Stress on the Genomic Level (2005)
Recreational music-making modulates the human stress response: a preliminary individualized gene expression strategy
Barry Bittman, Lee Berk, Mark Shannon, Muhammad Sharaf, Jim Westengard, Karl Guegler, David Ruff
Med Sci Monit 2005; 11(2):BR31-40
Meadville Medical Center, Mind-Body Wellness Center, Meadville, PA, U.S.A.
Department of Health Promotion & Education, School of Public Health and Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, CA, U.S.A.
Applied Biosystems, Foster City, CA, U.S.A.
Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, CA, U.S.A.
Background: A central component of the complex human biological stress response is the modulation of the neuro-endocrine-immune system with its intricate feedback loops that support homeostatic regulation. Well-documented marked gene expression variability among human and animal subjects coupled with sample collection timing and delayed effects, as well as a host of molecular detection challenges renders the quest for deciphering the human biological stress response challenging from many perspectives.
Material/Methods: A novel Recreational Music-Making (RMM) program was used in combination with a new strategy for peripheral blood gene expression analysis to assess individualized genomic stress induction signatures. The expression of 45 immune response-related genes was determined using a multiplex preamplification step prior to conventional quantitative Real Time Polymerase Chain Reaction (qRT-PCR) mRNA analysis to characterize the multidimensional biological impact of a 2-phase controlled stress induction/amelioration experimental protocol in 32 randomly assigned individuals.
Results: In subjects performing the RMM activity following a 1-hour stress induction protocol, 19 out of 45 markers demonstrated reversal with significant (P=0.05) Pearson correlations in contrast to 6 out of 45 markers in the resting control group and 0 out of 45 in the ongoing stressor group.
Conclusions: The resultant amelioration of stress-induced genomic expression supports the underlying premise that RMM warrants additional consideration as a rational choice within our armamentarium of stress reduction strategies. Modulation of individualized genomic stress induction signatures in peripheral blood presents a new opportunity for elucidating the dynamics of the human stress response.