International Journal of Exercise Science 14(3): 162-176, 2021. The purpose of this cross-sectional study was to explore physical activity, depression, fatigue, and quality of life (QOL), and their relationship to brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and nerve growth factor (NGF) in cancer survivors enrolled in a structured exercise program. Participants were recruited into two groups: in-treatment (IT), currently receiving chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy, and out of treatment (OT), not undergoing therapy. Participants wore accelerometers for 7 days and completed cardiorespiratory fitness, muscular strength, and depression, fatigue, and QOL assessments. Circulating BDNF and NGF concentrations were obtained using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays. Thirty-two participants (IT: n = 13, OT: n = 19) with an average age of 63 years and BMI of 27.5, spent 78% of their waking hours engaged in sedentary behavior outside of exercise training. Significant correlations were observed between light physical activity (LPA) outside of exercise training and QOL in IT (r = 0.626, p = 0.030), and fatigue in OT (r = 0.553, p = 0.021). Moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) outside of exercise training significantly correlated with leg press strength (r = 0.700, p = 0.008) in IT, and cardiorespiratory fitness (r = 0.440, p = 0.013) when groups were combined. Concentrations of NGF did not differ between groups, and in IT, BDNF was positively related to LPA outside of training and was significantly lower (87 ± 28.5 pg/mL) than in OT (137 ± 54 pg/mL; p=0.010). While structured exercise programs should focus on improving cardiorespiratory fitness and muscular strength during exercise training, these programs should consider physical activity outside of training, if well-tolerated, to potentially further lower fatigue and improve QOL in cancer survivors.
Smoak, Peter; Flores, Victoria; Harman, Nicholas; Lisano, Jonathon; Hayward, Reid; and Stewart, Laura
"Structured Exercise in Cancer Survivors: Is it Enough for Neural, Mental Health and Well-being?,"
International Journal of Exercise Science: Vol. 14
3, Pages 162 - 176.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.wku.edu/ijes/vol14/iss3/3