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Exploring exercise benefits for breast cancer patients
Date:8/28/2012

Researchers in Edmonton and Calgary want to recruit 1,500 breast cancer patients over the next decade to find out how exercise and fitness affects cancer survival and recovery.

The Alberta Moving Beyond Breast Cancer, or AMBER, study will see a multidisciplinary team of researchers from the University of Alberta, Alberta Health Services, University of Calgary and Athabasca University spend the next 10 to 15 years investigating how breast cancer patients might benefit from exercise and physical fitness.

"This is the first study of a group of breast cancer survivors that's focused specifically on physical activity and fitnesshow much exercise, the type of exercise, the pattern of exercisethat might be linked to risk of recurrence and survival," said team co-leader Kerry Courneya, Canada Research Chair in Physical Activity and Cancer in the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation.

"That will give us much better clues on the optimal exercise prescription for fighting breast cancer."

Though previous research has shown that physical activity improves a breast cancer patient's chances of survival, Courneya notes that such studies have relied on self-reported data, which is not always reliable. The AMBER study will include objective measures of health-related fitness and physical activity.

Courneya will lead efforts in Edmonton, where his team will recruit newly diagnosed breast cancer patients and assess their physical fitness, activity levels and body composition, in addition to blood and lymphedema tests. Testing will be done soon after surgery and again after one year and three years.

A similar group of patients will be assessed in Calgary by a team led by Christine Friedenreich, team co-leader, senior research scientist at Alberta Health Services, and adjunct professor and Alberta Cancer Foundation Weekend to End Women's Cancers Breast Cancer Chair at the University of Calgary.

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Contact: Bryan Alary
bryan.alary@ualberta.ca
780-492-0436
University of Alberta
Source:Eurekalert

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