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December 1962

Mental Stress, Blood Proteins, and the Hypothalamus: Experimental Results Showing Effect of Mental Stress upon 4S and 19S Proteins: Speculation That the Functional Behavior Disturbances May Be Expressions of a General Metabolic Disorder

Author Affiliations


Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1962;7(6):427-435. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1962.01720060039004

This paper has 3 purposes: (1) to report an experiment which showed that severe mental stress caused a rise in serum levels of 4S and 7S class proteins; (2) to review the literature concerning the effect of mental stress and disturbances of the diencephalon and hypothalamus upon the blood proteins and the immunological mechanisms; (3) to posit that the functional psychosis is but one expression of a general metabolic disorder which is contributed to by the effects of both stress and hypothalamic-hypophyseal action.

The finding of abnormal serum proteins in so-called functional psychoses was documented and extensively reviewed in previous communications.12-17 It seemed likely that these abnormalities might be connected intimately with the genesis of the psychosis, since they were seen in a group of acutely mentally disturbed patients very early in the course of their illness and before they had received drug or electroshock therapy.12,14,15 It

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