University Research Priority Program "Psychobiology of Stress"

The Research Priority Program "Psychobiology of Stress" brings together researchers from Faculty I - Psychology and the Research Institute of Psychobiology.  The program continues the long and successful tradition of research on stress in Trier and with a unique combination of methodological techniques, integrates genetic and psychobiological approaches to investigate the acute stress response and improve our understanding of stress and behavior.

Causal relationships between biological stress factors and psychological functions are examined, with particular attention being paid to the activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and the effects of the stress hormone cortisol. The Research Priority Program focusses on developing a new psychobiological stress model suitable for integrating intensity and time aspects of stress and cortisol.The program aims to contribute significantly to the specialty topic "Challenges of modern life design" in the university research profile. People in modern Western societies increasingly seem to be affected by stress. Standards, success and time pressure, insecurity and conflicts in the workplace, in school and personal relationships all play a role in increasing negative stress effects. These lead to an increase in health disorders which has additional negative effects on economy. Other effects, such as psychosocial stress effects have been less frequently investigated but have an underestimated importance. For example, psychosocial stress induces changes in psychological functions such as learning, memory, attention and social behaviour.

This program is devoted to extending knowledge and research on the acute stress response, utilising the strength of bringing together diverse scientific approaches within an interdisciplinary group of scientists.