Neighborhoods and Immune Function during Young Adulthood

Jodi Ford, Ohio State University
Christopher Browning, Ohio State University

The study examined the longitudinal effects of neighborhood Latino immigrant concentration during adolescence on young adults’ cell-mediated immune function and the extent to which adolescent age, race/ethnicity and foreign birth moderated these effects. Secondary data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, waves 1 and 4 were examined. Immune function was measured via Epstein-Barr virus IgG antibodies using a sample of 11,206 EBV seropositive adults. Latino immigrant concentration was a composite of 3 census tract level measures: proportion Hispanic/Latino, proportion foreign born, and proportion linguistic isolation. Multilevel modeling was employed using random intercepts multivariable linear regression models adjusting for an extensive set of potential confounding measures. Findings indicated a protective effect of living in a Latino immigrant enclave during adolescence on adult immune function (b= -0.03, p<0.009), which was not moderated by age, race/ethnicity or foreign birth. Further research exploring cumulative neighborhood effects and potential mechanisms is underway.

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Presented in Session 150: Neighborhood, School, and Community Influences on Child and Adolescent Health