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The Social Neuroscience & Health Lab at UNC is looking for participants for a study examining biological changes related to immune system activation.

This study is broken down into three components. Participants will first complete an online consent session via Zoom and schedule all study sessions. Participants will then complete an online questionnaires (~30 minutes) before going to the CTRC (located on the UNC Medical Campus) for a blood draw and to receive either the FDA-approved influenza vaccine or the sham injection (~40 minutes). Twenty-four hours after receiving the influenza vaccine, participants will come to Howell Hall (located on UNC’s campus) and complete more surveys, and online and behavioral tasks (~105 min). The session will conclude with a second blood draw (~15 minutes) and debriefing.

Participants will receive $25 for completing the first online session and going to the CTRC for the blood draw and vaccine injection (random assignment), and $50 for completing the 2-hour post-vaccine session in Howell Hall. 

Participants who complete all study components will receive a total of $75.  

If you: are a UNC-CH student, have not already received the annual influenza vaccine, have not already had influenza this season, do not use of tobacco products, do not use mood or immune-altering medications, are not allergy to eggs, do not report current depression, anxiety, any major medical condition (e.g., diabetes, asthma), do not have had Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS), are not allergic to the influenza vaccine or ingredients present in the vaccine, do not report exposure to Covid-19 in the ten days leading up to your session or upper respiratory symptoms in the five days leading up to your session, have not had an adverse reaction to blood or needles, then you may be eligible to participate. You will also need to identify that they have a same-gender friend who is willing to accompany you to the post-vaccine study session to complete part of the study procedures. Additionally, the study involves tasks that will be audio and video recorded. You should not participate in this study if you are not okay with being audio and video-recorded.

If you are interested in participating, please complete the following online screening questionnaire. If you are interested in learning more, please email us at

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