Bout of fear boosts immunity

2019-03-02 12:09:04

THERE might be a positive side to children who scream blue murder during immunisation – their fear of needles could make the vaccination more effective. A mouse study suggests that short-term stress increases both the strength and the duration of the immune response. Firdaus Dhabhar and Kavitha Viswanathan at Ohio State University injected a protein called keyhole limpet hemocyanin into the skin of 20 mice. While half stayed in their regular cages, the other half were put in much smaller wire cages for two and a half hours before the injection, which is known to cause mild stress. Nine months later,