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Respiratory Sinus Arrhythmia Levels and Fluctuation in Children of Depressed versus Nondepressed Mothers

dc.contributor.advisorGarber, Judy
dc.contributor.authorCurhan, Alexa
dc.descriptionExamining respiratory sinus arrhythmia levels and fluctuation in offspring of depressed vs. non depressed during mood induction videos PSY 296B, Honors Thesis, Dr. Saylor, Dr. Bachorowskien_US
dc.description.abstractPrevious research has demonstrated that offspring of depressed mothers are at increased risk for developing dysfunctional affect regulation, which is a risk factor for the onset of depression and other psychopathology. One way in which depression may be transmitted from mothers to their children is through dysfunctional neuroregulatory mechanisms, especially those related to affect regulation. Respiratory Sinus Arrhythmia (RSA) has been shown to be related to affect regulation, and RSA level and fluctuation index an individual’s autonomic flexibility. The present study investigated whether there were differences in RSA level and fluctuation in offspring of depressed and nondepressed mothers, as well as how RSA levels related to affect. The study consisted of 92 mother-child dyads (37 mothers with a history of depression and 55 nondepressed mothers). Mothers and children completed questionnaires, and RSA data were obtained from children while they watched brief video clips (neutral, negative, and positive). RSA levels or fluctuation did not differ significantly between children of depressed and nondepressed mothers, and RSA levels did not significantly predict children’s affect during the mood induction videos. Exploratory analyses revealed a nonsignificant, trend for child sex and mother’s level of depression symptoms to predict RSA during the mood induction videos. Limitations of the current study and directions for future research are discussed.en_US
dc.description.sponsorshipThesis completed in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the Honors Program in Psychological Sciencesen_US
dc.publisherVanderbilt Universityen_US
dc.subjectOffspring of Depressed Mothersen_US
dc.subjectRespiratory Sinus Arrhythmiaen_US
dc.subjectEmotion Regulationen_US
dc.subject.lcshHeart beaten_US
dc.subject.lcshChildren of depressed personsen_US
dc.subject.lcshMother and childen_US
dc.subject.lcshAffect (Psychology)en_US
dc.titleRespiratory Sinus Arrhythmia Levels and Fluctuation in Children of Depressed versus Nondepressed Mothersen_US
dc.title.alternativeRSA in children of depressed vs. non depressed mothersen_US
dc.description.collegePeabody Collegeen_US
dc.description.schoolVanderbilt Universityen_US
dc.description.departmentPsychology and Human Developmenten_US

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