Minority and low socioeconomic status (SES) populations show disproportionate rates of cardiovascular disease (CVD) morbidity and mortality, and eliminating these disparities is a priority objective of Healthy People 2010. Previous research suggests that in addition to many other variables, psychosocial factors may contribute to CVD disparities. The proposed research will use the Reserve Capacity Model (Gallo and Matthews, 2003) as a conceptual framework through which to examine the roles of stress, psychosocial resources, and emotional factors in SES and ethnic CVD disparities, in a community-based random sample of middle-aged, Mexican-American and non-Latino White women with relatively low and high SES (N=300). The Reserve Capacity Model posits that individuals with lower social status (low SES, minority ethnicity) may suffer negative emotional and physical health consequences due to stress experienced across multiple domains. Stress may exert direct effects on behavioral and physiological risk processes, or it may influence emotional variables which are themselves putative CVD risk factors. In addition, persons with low social status may maintain a smaller bank of resilient psychosocial resources with which to manage stress, making them especially vulnerable to concomitant physical and emotional wear and tear. The effects of low SES may be amplified in Latino women (i.e., synergistic effects). However, Mexican-American women could also benefit from resilient, socio-cultural resources that protect them, to some extent, from stress. In the current study, women will undergo a comprehensive assessment of SES, psychosocial factors, physiological and behavioral risk factors, and CVD biomarkers, and will participate in a two-day evaluation of ambulatory blood pressure and psychosocial experiences assessed via ecological momentary assessment. By examining potentially modifiable psychosocial variables as a pathway underlying CVD disparities, this study seeks to inform efforts to understand and eliminate health disparities. ? ? ?

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)
Research Project (R01)
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Study Section
Biobehavioral Mechanisms of Emotion, Stress and Health Study Section (MESH)
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Jobe, Jared B
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San Diego State University
Schools of Arts and Sciences
San Diego
United States
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