Exercise programs during and after cancer treatment can improve functional capacity and cardiopulmonary fitness, reduce symptoms of fatigue, and improve a patient's quality of life, according to a new report released in August by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). The report, funded by NCI, also shows that exercise programs can reduce cancer patients' symptoms of anxiety and depression during treatment.
The study, led by researchers at the University of Minnesota's Evidence-Based Practice Center, looked at studies published between 1996 and 2003 - specifically, studies that tested the effect of physical activity interventions, alone or combined with diet modification or smoking cessation, on cancer survivors. The results of this analysis did not favor any one type of exercise program or setting and showed no difference between shorter, less intensive programs and longer programs that were more intensive.
"Regular physical activity is important for both lowering the risk for and managing multiple diseases, including some cancers," commented NCI Director Dr. Andrew von Eschenbach. "The more we understand about how to help people start and maintain exercise programs, the more we can help cancer survivors combat some of the early and late effects of cancer and its treatment." The entire report is available at http://cancercontrol.cancer.gov/d4d/evidence_report.html.
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EGRP Holds Leadership Conference for Epidemiologists
Dr. Catherine DeAngelis, editor-in-chief of the Journal of the American Medical Association, gave the keynote address on the importance of epidemiologic studies to public health. Other presentations were given by Dr. Laurence Kolonel, Cancer Research Center of Hawaii, University of Hawaii, on diet, genes, and cancer; Dr. Neil Caporaso, NCI's Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics (DCEG), on tobacco, genes, and cancer; Dr. Stephen Chanock, DCEG and CCR, on genetics in epidemiology; Dr. Michael Thun, American Cancer Society, on cohort consortia; and Dr. Patricia Hartge, DCEG, on case-control consortia. Also speaking were Dr. Graham Colditz, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard University; Dr. Margaret Spitz, University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center; and Drs. Robert Croyle, Jon Kerner, and Edward Trapido, DCCPS.
As a result of the workshop, four research working groups based on the breakout sessions' work will be formed: Diet/Energy Balance Epidemiology Research, Haplotypes versus Genotypes, Epidemiology of Rare Cancers, and Susceptibility to Tobacco Carcinogenesis. Extramural and intramural scientists will collaborate in the groups to generate new scientific ideas and hypotheses.
Participant presentations and more information about the workshop will be made available on the EGRP Web site at epi.grants.cancer.gov.