Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Being Bullied Impacts Monkey Immune System

The stress of being the new kid on the block may cause changes to the immune system, leaving the body vulnerable to getting sick, finds a new study on monkeys.

Researchers knew that social stress of being the low female on the dominance totem pole induces social stress in monkeys, but Jenny Tung, an associate professor at Duke University, wanted to see how this stress impacted them physically.

"It's possible to actually change an individual's social status and in that way induce social stress in some individuals and not others," Tung told LiveScience. "We extended prior work in rhesus macaques to the modern genomic era."

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