Exercise training as treatment in cancer cachexia

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Lira, Fabio Santos [UNESP]
Rosa Neto, Jose Cesar
Seelaender, Marilia

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Canadian Science Publishing, Nrc Research Press


Cachexia is a wasting syndrome that may accompany a plethora of diseases, including cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, aids, and rheumatoid arthritis. It is associated with central and systemic increases of pro-inflammatory factors, and with decreased quality of life, response to pharmacological treatment, and survival. At the moment, there is no single therapy able to reverse cachexia many symptoms, which include disruption of intermediary metabolism, endocrine dysfunction, compromised hypothalamic appetite control, and impaired immune function, among other. Growing evidence, nevertheless, shows that chronic exercise, employed as a tool to counteract systemic inflammation, may represent a low-cost, safe alternative for the prevention/ attenuation of cancer cachexia. Despite the well-documented capacity of chronic exercise to counteract sustained disease-related inflammation, few studies address the effect of exercise training in cancer cachexia. The aim of the present review was hence to discuss the results of cachexia treatment with endurance training. As opposed to resistance exercise, endurance exercise may be performed devoid of equipment, is well tolerated by patients, and an anti-inflammatory effect may be observed even at low-intensity. The decrease in inflammatory status induced by endurance protocols is paralleled by recovery of various metabolic pathways. The mechanisms underlying the response to the treatment are considered.



exercise, cachexia-cancer, inflammation, metabolism

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Applied Physiology Nutrition And Metabolism-physiologie Appliquee Nutrition Et Metabolisme. Ottawa: Canadian Science Publishing, Nrc Research Press, v. 39, n. 6, p. 679-686, 2014.