Psychosocial factors such as stress, personality, and social support relate to differences in disease progression in cancer patients. Neuroendocrine substances associated with psychosocial factors may regulate immune responses to cancer, as well as regulate the activity of oncogenic (cancer-causing) viruses, DNA-repair processes, and the expression in tumor cells of genes that may affect the tumor's growth and metastasis. Biobehavioral oncology research seeks to understand how these psychosocial factors, and interventions designed to modify them, become neurohormonal changes that alter cell signaling and tumor growth, viral oncogenesis, and immune responses. We review the empirical basis for psychosocial factors and biobehavioral processes in cancer progression and suggest future research.
- Tumor growth
ASJC Scopus subject areas