GENERALIZED SELF-EFFICACY AND IMMUNE FUNCTION IN A LEANED HELPLESSNESS TASK
Kuno, M. and Ohira, H., Nagoya University and Yazawa, H., Tokai Women's College, Japan
Studies in psychoneuroimmunology have clarified that acute stressors can influence immune system. However, it is not clear how two important factors regulating stress responses, generalized self-efficacy and controllability of stressor affect fluctuation in the immune system. A Japanese version of self-efficacy scale was administered to 373 female undergraduates. Nineteen students whose score was high in the scale and 20 students whose one was low were selected as subjects. Our experiment consisted of a pre-treatment task and a following test task based on a leaned helplessness paradigm. Half of the subjects were able to control the aversive noise (contingent condition). Subjects with control over the noise were yoked to subjects who could not control the noise (non-contingent condition) in the pre-treatment task. Immune reactivity evaluated by change of volume of salivary secretory immunoglobulin A and subjective perception of controllability were assessed before and after the pre-treatment task and after the test task. Performance in the test task was also evaluated.. The high self-efficacy group showed more tolerance to leaned helplessness in behavioral level than the low self-efficacy group. The secretion rate of s-IgA increasedafter the test task compared to baseline only in the uncontrollable group. However, perception of controllability and subjective intense of stress did not differ between the groups. These results suggest that self-efficacy relates to behavioral change and controllability relates to immune regulation in learned helplessness situations.