Purpose: This study investigated the extent to which multiple sleep dimensions are associated with inflammation during adolescents' transition to young adulthood, a developmental period when sleep difficulties and systemic inflammation levels are on the rise. Additionally, the moderating roles of socioeconomic status (SES) and ethnicity were explored. Methods: A total of 350 Asian American, Latino, and European American youth participated at two-year intervals in wave 1 (n = 316, Mage = 16.40), wave 2 (n = 248 including 34 new participants to refresh the sample, Mage = 18.31), and wave 3 (n = 180, Mage = 20.29). Sleep duration (weekday and weekend) and variability in duration (nightly and weekday/weekend) were obtained from eight nights of wrist actigraphy. Subjective sleep quality was assessed using the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index. Levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), a biomarker of systemic inflammation, were assayed from dried blood spots obtained from finger pricks. Results: Multilevel models demonstrated that greater weekday/weekend sleep variability and worse sleep quality were associated with higher CRP; shorter weekend duration was associated with higher CRP only at younger ages. Shorter weekday duration was associated with higher CRP only among high-SES youth, whereas greater nightly variability was associated with higher CRP only among European American youth. Conclusions: Aspects of poor sleep may contribute to the rise of CRP during adolescents' transition to young adulthood, especially in earlier years. In addition, some sleep-CRP associations may vary as a function of youth's SES and ethnicity.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Psychiatry and Mental health