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Biological stress response terminology: Integrating the concepts of adaptive response and preconditioning stress within a hormetic dose-response framework.

  • Author(s): Calabrese, Edward J;
  • Bachmann, Kenneth A;
  • Bailer, A John;
  • Bolger, P Michael;
  • Borak, Jonathan;
  • Cai, Lu;
  • Cedergreen, Nina;
  • Cherian, M George;
  • Chiueh, Chuang C;
  • Clarkson, Thomas W;
  • Cook, Ralph R;
  • Diamond, David M;
  • Doolittle, David J;
  • Dorato, Michael A;
  • Duke, Stephen O;
  • Feinendegen, Ludwig;
  • Gardner, Donald E;
  • Hart, Ronald W;
  • Hastings, Kenneth L;
  • Hayes, A Wallace;
  • Hoffmann, George R;
  • Ives, John A;
  • Jaworowski, Zbigniew;
  • Johnson, Thomas E;
  • Jonas, Wayne B;
  • Kaminski, Norbert E;
  • Keller, John G;
  • Klaunig, James E;
  • Knudsen, Thomas B;
  • Kozumbo, Walter J;
  • Lettieri, Teresa;
  • Liu, Shu-Zheng;
  • Maisseu, Andre;
  • Maynard, Kenneth I;
  • Masoro, Edward J;
  • McClellan, Roger O;
  • Mehendale, Harihara M;
  • Mothersill, Carmel;
  • Newlin, David B;
  • Nigg, Herbert N;
  • Oehme, Frederick W;
  • Phalen, Robert F;
  • Philbert, Martin A;
  • Rattan, Suresh IS;
  • Riviere, Jim E;
  • Rodricks, Joseph;
  • Sapolsky, Robert M;
  • Scott, Bobby R;
  • Seymour, Colin;
  • Sinclair, David A;
  • Smith-Sonneborn, Joan;
  • Snow, Elizabeth T;
  • Spear, Linda;
  • Stevenson, Donald E;
  • Thomas, Yolene;
  • Tubiana, Maurice;
  • Williams, Gary M;
  • Mattson, Mark P
  • et al.
Abstract

Many biological subdisciplines that regularly assess dose-response relationships have identified an evolutionarily conserved process in which a low dose of a stressful stimulus activates an adaptive response that increases the resistance of the cell or organism to a moderate to severe level of stress. Due to a lack of frequent interaction among scientists in these many areas, there has emerged a broad range of terms that describe such dose-response relationships. This situation has become problematic because the different terms describe a family of similar biological responses (e.g., adaptive response, preconditioning, hormesis), adversely affecting interdisciplinary communication, and possibly even obscuring generalizable features and central biological concepts. With support from scientists in a broad range of disciplines, this article offers a set of recommendations we believe can achieve greater conceptual harmony in dose-response terminology, as well as better understanding and communication across the broad spectrum of biological disciplines.

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