Author(s): Rethorst CD, Moynihan J, Lyness JM, Heffner KL, Chapman BP
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Abstract OBJECTIVE: To determine whether the relationship between interleukin (IL)-6 and depressive symptoms is moderated by participation in moderate-intensity physical activity in a sample of primary care patients. Elevated inflammation has been associated with a number of poor health outcomes. Depressive symptoms may be related to higher levels of the inflammatory marker IL-6; however, previous findings are inconsistent, possibly due to unidentified moderating factors. METHODS: A total of 107 participants, aged ≥ 40 years, were recruited in Rochester, New York, in 2006 to 2007. Depressive symptoms were measured by the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale-Revised, participation in moderate-intensity physical activity was measured using a modified version of the Community Health Activities Model Program for Seniors Activity Questionnaire for Older Adults, and serum IL-6 concentrations were determined using standard enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay protocols and high-sensitivity, anti-cytokine antibody pairs. A hierarchical multiple regression analysis was conducted. RESULTS: The correlation between IL-6 and depressive symptoms was nonsignificant (r = .086, p = .40). The association between IL-6 and depressive symptoms was moderated by participation in moderate-intensity physical activity (p = .02). Among those who did not engage in moderate-intensity physical activity, higher levels of depressive symptoms were significantly associated with higher levels of IL-6 (r = .28, p = .05), whereas this association was not significant among those who did participate in moderate-intensity physical activity (r = -.13, p = .38). CONCLUSION: Participation in moderate-intensity physical activity may buffer the risk of higher inflammation often associated with higher levels of depressive symptoms.
This article was published in Psychosom Med
and referenced in Journal of Yoga & Physical Therapy