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Biomarkers of stress and resilience in AYAs receiving bone marrow transplants

In partnership with Dr. Abby Rosenberg, we are collecting biologic data from AYA patients receiving a resilience intervention while undergoing bone marrow transplant. Participants are fitted with a wearable device that tracks heart rate variability (HRV), which is a marker of the ‘fight-or-flight’ response. Blood samples are also collected to measure a gene expression pattern (the conserved transcriptional response to adversity, CTRA) that is ‘turned on’ by stress and can increase inflammation. These stress biomarkers are then mapped onto patient-reported measures of stress, resilience, anxiety, and depression.

By identifying stress biomarkers and linking them with psychosocial symptoms and clinical outcomes, we hope to design interventions targeting the stress response. Interventions tailored to an individual’s “stress phenotype” could include positive psychology and stress reduction modalities and medications to reduce adrenergic activation.

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Ben Towne Center for Childhood Cancer Research
1920 Terry Ave.
Seattle, WA 98101

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