Based on the notion of relative weight of biological and psychological factors, psychosomatics may be conceived within the two orthogonal axes of "disease" and "personality". Recent studies on the multifactorial nature of diseases and the gene-environment relationship show the relevance of childhood maltreatment and attachment bonds on the vulnerability to medical illness through the interacting immune and pro-inflammatory activity. Studies on personality have shown so far that psychological factors of vulnerability to somatization may be present across different medical and psychopathological disorders. Some of the most recently investigated constructs as alexithymia are an attempt to explain various complex phenomena as the relationship between emotions and feelings, the neurobiological correlates of emotions, and the developmental factors of mentalization hidden in the mother-child relationship.
Keywords: Alexithymia, mind-body, mother-child relationship, psycho-neuro-immunology, psychosomatics