Is there any association of personality traits with vascular endothelial function or systemic inflammation?


1 Department of Psychiatry, Behavioral Sciences Research Center, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran

2 Department of Internal Medicine, Cardiovascular Disease Research Center, School of Medicine, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran

3 Department of Epidemiology, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran


Background: Evidences showed association of some personality traits with increased risk of cardiovascular diseases, but mediated mechanisms are not entirely described. In this study, we investigated the association of different personality traits with systemic inflammation and endothelial function as probable mediators.
Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted in 2011 on 40-60 years old employees of an industrial company located in Isfahan city (central Iran). Participants were selected through simple random sampling. Personality types were evaluated using the neuroticism-extroversion-openness personality inventory and systemic inflammatory status was determined with high sensitive C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) level. To evaluate endothelial function flow mediated dilation (FMD) were measured. The obtained data were analyzed with univariate correlation and multiple linear regression tests.
Results: A total of 254 cases with mean age of 51.4 ± 6.1 years were evaluated. There was no significant relationship between hs-CRP level and FMD with the personality traits in univariate analysis. In multivariate analysis, no association was found between the scores of personality traits and FMD with controlling the factors such as age, body mass index dyslipidemia, hypertension and diabetes. Only there was an inverse association between conscientiousness score and hs-CRP (β = −0.241, P = 0.013).
Conclusions: In our population who were the employees of an industrial company, no relationship was found between specific personality trait and endothelial dysfunction. However, we found that the personality trait of responsibility (conscientiousness) is negatively associated with inflammation. Further multi-center studies and also cohort studies are recommended in this regard.


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