Reactivity of salivary uric acid in response to social evaluative stress in African Americans

Biol Psychol. 2020 May;153:107882. doi: 10.1016/j.biopsycho.2020.107882. Epub 2020 Mar 24.


High uric acid (UA) is associated with hypertension and cardiovascular disease (CVD), both of which occur disproportionately among African Americans. High UA also predicts greater blood pressure reactivity responses to acute social stress. However, whether UA itself shows reactivity in response to stress is unknown. We evaluated salivary uric acid (sUA) and blood pressure reactivity in response to acute social stress. Healthy African Americans (N = 103; 32 % male; M age = 31.36 years), completed the Trier Social Stress Test. sUA and blood pressure measurements were taken before, during and after the stressor task. sUA showed significant reactivity and recovery, especially among older African Americans. Total sUA activation was also associated with systolic and diastolic blood pressure total activation. Findings illuminate that acute stress may be a way in which UA is implicated in hypertension and CVD, suggesting a critical need to explore UA reactivity as a novel parameter of the acute stress response.

Keywords: Blood pressure; Cardiovascular disease; Health disparities; Stress reactivity; Trier social stress test; Uric acid.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • African Americans / psychology*
  • Blood Pressure
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / metabolism
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Saliva / chemistry*
  • Stress, Psychological / metabolism*
  • Uric Acid / metabolism*
  • Young Adult


  • Uric Acid