Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 20 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Research on young animals and children has demonstrated that the prenatal and early rearing environments can leave an indelible mark on the immature immune system. During normal development, these environmental influences can have beneficial consequences including the promotion of immune tolerance during pregnancy, help in the programming of regulatory set points in the fetus, and prime immune responses during childhood. Thus, this aspect of immunity in the young host can be viewed as a “learning system,” very amenable to change, and often in a favorable manner. However, this same flexibility may result in a vulnerability to physical and psychological insults, including to a poor diet, pathogen exposure, or parental loss and maltreatment. The take- home message of developmental psychoneuroimmunology (PNI) is that the environmental context can promote resilience and immune vigor, as well as be the reason for lacunae and impairments that persist into adulthood, accounting for individual differences in morbidity and longevity.

Keywords: pregnancy, placenta, fetus, prenatal, rearing, weaning cytokines, thymus, tolerance, microbiota, passive immunity, antibody, autoiommune cortisol, antenatal corticosteroids, allergies, asthma

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.