Suzanne Pieper

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BACKGROUND Oxytocin facilitates parental caregiving and mother-infant bonding and might be involved in responses to infant crying. Infant crying provides information about the physical status and mood of the infant and elicits parental proximity and caregiving. Oxytocin might modulate the activation of brain structures involved in the perception of cry(More)
Several theories of the stress-disease link have now incorporated prolonged activation. This article argues that these theories still lack an important element, that is, the cognitive nature of the mechanism that causes stress responses to be sustained. The perception of stress and the initial response to it do not automatically lead to prolonged(More)
In this study, we examined adults' cardiac reactivity to repeated infant cry sounds in a genetically informative design. Three episodes of cry stimuli were presented to a sample of 184 adult twin pairs. Cardiac reactivity increased with each cry episode, indicating that subjects were increasingly sensitized to repeated infant distress signals. Non-parents(More)
BACKGROUND Prolonged physiological activation before or after stressors has gained recognition as a decisive element in theories that explain the link between stress and disease, specifically cardiovascular (CV) disease. This view is opposed to the conventional reactivity hypothesis that emphasizes responses during stressors. PURPOSE Prolonged activity(More)
OBJECTIVES To test the hypothesize that increased heart rate (HR) and decreased heart rate variability (HRV) are not only due to concurrent stressful events and worries but also to stressors and worries occurring in the preceding hours or stressors anticipated to occur in the next hour. Worry was expected to mediate at least part of the prolonged effects of(More)
Both the oxytocin receptor (OXTR) gene and depressive symptoms have been associated with parenting behaviour. The OXTR GG genotype has been suggested to be related to more sensitive parenting, whereas depressive symptoms may affect sensitivity negatively. We examined the role of OXTR and the influence of depressive symptoms in explaining differences in(More)
OBJECTIVE To examine the underlying mechanisms of adults' intended caregiving responses to cry sounds in a behavioral genetic design and to investigate the role of cry pitch and perceived urgency in sensitive and harsh caregiving responses. METHODS The sample consisted of 184 adult twin pairs (18-69 years), including males and females, parents and(More)
We evaluated the role of the serotonin transporter gene promoter polymorphism (5-HTTLPR) in the etiology of dissociation. Adult twin pairs (N = 184 pairs; mean age 33.0 years, SD = 10.8) completed measures for dissociation and trauma. The DNA samples were genotyped for 5-HTTLPR adjusted for rs25531 alleles. Behavioral genetic analyses showed that genetic(More)
OBJECTIVE To hypothesize that increased heart rate (HR) and decreased heart rate variability (HRV) occurs not only during stressful events but also during episodes in which stress is cognitively represented, but not necessarily present, i.e., during worry. METHODS Ambulatory HR and HRV of 73 female and male teachers were recorded for 4 days, during which(More)
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