Perceived Stigmatization, Ingroup Pride, and Immune and Endocrine Activity: Evidence From a Community Sample of Black and Latina Women

Kyle G. Ratner, May Ling Halim, David M. Amodio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Racial disparities are a major public health concern in the United States. The authors examined whether Black and Latina community members' perceptions of stigmatization and personal feelings about their group relate to immune and endocrine markers associated with health risk, including the cytokine interleukin-6 (IL-6), which coordinates the immune response to infection, the anabolic hormone dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), which promotes cellular resilience, and the catabolic hormone cortisol, which releases metabolic stores in response to threat. Greater perceived stigmatization was associated with higher basal IL-6, whereas greater ingroup pride was related to elevated basal DHEA. These associations remained with adjustment for general perceived stress, experience with discrimination, age, and income. No significant perceived stigmatization or ingroup pride effects emerged for basal cortisol. These findings provide new evidence that perceived stigmatization and ingroup pride are linked to indicators of disease and resilience, respectively, highlighting mechanisms through which racial and ethnic stigmatization may contribute to health disparities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)82-91
Number of pages10
JournalSocial Psychological and Personality Science
Volume4
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2013

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Keywords

  • DHEA
  • IL-6
  • cortisol
  • ingroup pride
  • perceived stigmatization
  • racial and ethnic health disparities

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology

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