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Unformatted text preview: h (see Figure 3a and b). To further examine this interaction, analyses were conducted separately for the high- and
low-risk groups. Parental responsiveness predicted telomere
length among high-risk children, with more responsive parenting associated with longer telomeres (r ¼ .35, p , .05)
but not among low-risk children (r ¼ –.10, p . .05). The results remained significant when excluding the second child of
the two sibling pairs.
Discussion Telomere length was significantly shorter in high-risk children with previous involvement in the Child Welfare System,
relative to low-risk comparison children. Further, parental responsiveness moderated the association between early adversity and telomere length, with higher parental responsiveness
predicting longer telomeres only among high-risk children.
These findings remained significant after controlling for
household income, birth weight, gender, and minority status.
Taken together, these findings support the critical role of
Parental responsiveness and telomere length. Multiple linear
high-quality parenting behavior in modifying the biological
regression analyses were conducted to examine the associaimpact of early-life stress.
tion between parental responsiveness and telomere length.
Early-life stress appears to affect telomere biology very
Covariates (i.e., log-transformed household income, chilearly in childhood, by 4 to 6 years of age, suggesting that
dren’s birth weight, children’s gender, and children’s minorchanges in telomere length may manifest at a much earlier
ity status) were entered into Step 1 of the model. Risk group
age than has been typically assessed. In peripheral blood
(low risk vs. high risk), parental responsiveness, and a Risk Â
Given that children living under chronically
mononuclear cells, telomeres are thought to shorten at an acResponsiveness interaction term were added in at Step 2, with
challenging conditions are especially at risk for
celerated rate in early life (e.g., approximately 170 base pairs
telomere length as the dependent variable. The results are prebiological dy...
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This note was uploaded on 03/24/2014 for the course PSY 21201 taught by Professor Bernard during the Winter '13 term at SUNY Stony Brook.
- Winter '13