MacArthur SES & Health Network

Sheldon Cohen

Sheldon Cohen

Professor, Department of Psychology Carnegie Mellon University 1982-present Adjunct Professor of Pathology (Immunopathology) and of Psychiatry University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine 1990-present Co-director University of Pittsburgh - Carnegie Mellon University Brain, Behavior and Immunity Center 1989-present

Department of Psychology
Carnegie Mellon University
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
Tel: (412) 268-2336
Fax:(412) 268-3294

A. B. Monteith College
Wayne State University, (Psychology), 1969
Ph.D. New York University, (Social Psychology), 1973

Research Interests

Dr. Cohen is interested in the role of psychological and social factors in immunity and health. Much of his work focuses on risk for infectious illness, although he also studies asthma and cancer. Work closely tied to network interests include his human and non-human primate studies on the importance of social status for immunity and susceptibility to infectious illness; studies of possible pathways linking SES to various health outcomes; work on psychological, behavioral, endocrine, and immune changes in response to chronic stressful events; and work on the importance of chronic stressful events for response to acute events.

Selected Publications

Cohen, S., Frank, E., Doyle, W.J., Skoner, D. P., Rabin, B. S., & Gwaltney, J. M., Jr. (1998). Types of stressors that increase susceptibility to the common cold in adults. Health Psychology. 17, 214-223.

Cohen, S., & Rabin, B.S. (1998). Stress, immunity and cancer. Journal of the National Cancer Institute, 90, 3-4.

Cohen, S., Doyle, W. J., & Skoner, D. P. (1999). Psychological stress, cytokine production, and severity of upper respiratory illness. Psychosomatic Medicine, 61, 175-180.

Cohen, S., Kaplan, G. A., & Salonen, J.T. (1999). The role of psychological characteristics in the relation between socioeconomic status and perceived health. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 29, 551-574.

Glaser, R., Rabin, B. S., Chesney, M., & Cohen, S. & Natelson, B. (1999). Stress-induced immunomodulation: Are their implications for infectious disease? Journal of the American Medical Association, 281, 2268-2270.

Wright, R. J., Rodriguez, M., Cohen, S. (1999). Review of psychosocial stress and asthma: An integrated biopsychosocial approach. Thorax, 53, 1066-1074.

Cohen, S. (1999). Social Status and Susceptibility to Respiratory Infections. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 896: 246-253..

Feldman, P., Cohen, S., Lepore, S., Matthews, K. A., Kamarck, T. W., & Marsland, A. L. (1999). Negative emotions and acute physiological response to stress. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 21:216-222.

Miller, G.E., Cohen, S., & Herbert, T. B. (1999). Pathways linking major depression and immunity in ambulatory female patients. Psychosomatic Medicine, 61:850-860.

Cohen, S., Brissette, I., Doyle, W. J., & Skoner, D. P.  (2000).  Social integration and health:  The case of the common cold.  Journal of Social Structure. 1(3), 1-7.

S. Cohen, L. Underwood & B. Gottlieb (Eds.). (2000). Social support measurement and intervention. New York: Oxford University Press, 29-52.

Cohen, S., Hamrick, N., Rodriquez, M., Rabin, B.S. & Manuck, S.B. (2000). The stability and intercorrelations between cardiovascular, immune, endocrine, and psychological reactity. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 22(3), 171-179.

Cohen, S., Miller, G. E., & Rabin, B. S. (2001). Psychological stress and antibody response to immunization: A critical review of the human literature. Psychosomatic Medicine, 63, 7-18.

Cohen, S., & Rodriguez, M. (2001). Stress, viral respiratory infections and asthma. In D. P. Skoner (Ed.), Asthma and Respiratory Infection. New York: Marcel Decker, 193-208.

Stone, A.A., Schwartz, J.E., Smyth, J., Kirschbaum, C., Cohen, S., Hellhammer, D., & Grossman, S. (2001). Individual differences in the diurnal cycle of salivary free cortisol: a replication of flattened cycles for some individuals. Psychoneuroendocrinology, 26, 295-303.

Miller, G.E. & Cohen, S. (2001). Psychological interventions and the immune system: A meta-analytic review and critique. Health Psychology, 20(1), 47-63.

Cohen, S., Miller, G.E., & Rabin, B.S. (2001). Psychological stress and antibody repsonse to immunization: A critical review of the human literature. Psychosomatic Medicine, 63, 7-18.

Cohen, S. (2002). Psychosocial stress, social networks and susceptibility to infection. In H. G. Koenig & H. J. Cohen. The link between religion and health: Psychoneuroimmunology and the faith factor . New York: Oxford University Press, 101-123.

Kubazansky, L.D., Wright, R., Cohen S., Weiss, S., Rosner, B. & Sparrow, D. (2002). Breathing easy: A prospecitve study of optimism and pulmonary function in the Normative Aging Study. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 24(4), 345-353.

Miller, G.E., Cohen, S. & Ritchey, A.K. (2002). Chronic psychological stress and the regulation of pro-inflammatory cytokines: A glucocorticoid-resistance model. Health Psychology, 21(6), 531-541.

Cohen, S., Doyle, W.J., Turner, R.B., Alper, C.M. & Skoner, D.P. (2003). Emotional style and susceptibility to the common cold. Psychosomatic Medicine, 65(4), 652-657.

Cohen, S., Doyle, W.J., Turner, R.B., Alper, C.M. & Skoner, D.P. (2003). Sociability and susceptibility to the common cold. Psychological Science, 14(5), 389-395.

Jackson, B., Kubzansky, L.D., Cohen, S., Weiss, S. & Wright, R.J. (2003). A matter of life and breath: Childhood socioeconomic status is related to young adult pulmonary function in the CARDIA study. International Journal of Epidemiology, 33, 1-8.

Internet Links

Sheldon Cohen's CMU Lab website.


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