Effect of oral melatonin on the procoagulant response to acute psychosocial stress in healthy men: a randomized placebo-controlled study

Wirtz, Petra H.; Bärtschi, Carmen; Spillmann, Maria; Ehlert, Ulrike; von Känel, Roland (2008). Effect of oral melatonin on the procoagulant response to acute psychosocial stress in healthy men: a randomized placebo-controlled study. Journal of pineal research, 44(4), pp. 358-65. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell 10.1111/j.1600-079X.2007.00535.x

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Acute mental stress is a potent trigger of acute coronary syndromes. Catecholamine-induced hypercoagulability with acute stress contributes to thrombus growth after coronary plaque rupture. Melatonin may diminish catecholamine activity. We hypothesized that melatonin mitigates the acute procoagulant stress response and that this effect is accompanied by a decrease in the stress-induced catecholamine surge. Forty-five healthy young men received a single oral dose of either 3 mg melatonin (n = 24) or placebo medication (n = 21). One hour thereafter, they underwent a standardized short-term psychosocial stressor. Plasma levels of clotting factor VII activity (FVII:C), FVIII:C, fibrinogen, D-dimer, and catecholamines were measured at rest, immediately after stress, and 20 min and 60 min post-stress. The integrated change in D-dimer levels from rest to 60 min post-stress differed between medication groups controlling for demographic and metabolic factors (P = 0.047, eta(p)(2) = 0.195). Compared with the melatonin group, the placebo group showed a greater increase in absolute D-dimer levels from rest to immediately post-stress (P = 0.13; eta(p)(2) = 0.060) and significant recovery of D-dimer levels from immediately post-stress to 60 min thereafter (P = 0.007; eta(p)(2) = 0.174). Stress-induced changes in FVII:C, FVIII:C, fibrinogen, and catecholamines did not significantly differ between groups. Oral melatonin attenuated the stress-induced elevation in the sensitive coagulation activation marker D-dimer without affecting catecholamine activity. The finding provides preliminary support for a protective effect of melatonin in reducing the atherothrombotic risk with acute mental stress.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology > Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy
04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Head Organs and Neurology (DKNS) > Clinic of Neurology > Centre of Competence for Psychosomatic Medicine

UniBE Contributor:

Wirtz, Petra Hedwig and von Känel, Roland


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health










Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 15:06

Last Modified:

17 Sep 2014 08:22

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https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/29007 (FactScience: 132942)

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