Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women, with over two-hundred and sixty thousand new cases
expected in the United States in 2018 alone. There are estimated to be more than 3 million breast cancer
survivors in the US due to substantial advances in detection and treatment, with this number continuing to
grow. However, treatments also increase risk for long-term and late toxicities, including effects on physical and
cognitive function that interfere with quality of life. One possible explanation recently proposed is that the
toxicity of cancer treatments may directly accelerate the aging process in some patients, leading to earlier onset
of age-related symptoms such as cognitive complaints, fatigue, declines in physical function, and lasting pain.
However, this hypothesis has not been rigorously tested in clinical populations. Our study will examine the
effects of common breast cancer treatments as they relate to markers of biological aging, inflammation, and
reports of physical and cognitive complaints in a prospective study of breast cancer patients assessed prior to
and after exposure to chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy. The proposed study will leverage an existing NCI-
funded cohort of women with early-stage breast cancer assessed before onset of adjuvant therapy with
radiation (RT), chemotherapy (CT), or endocrine therapy and again after completion of RT and/or CT and at
follow-up visits occurring 6-, 12-, and 18-month post-treatment, with serial blood specimens for plasma, DNA
and RNA analyses. In this well characterized cohort of breast cancer survivors, we propose to add the
assessment of markers of biological aging using existing collected specimens and add a new behavioral
assessment at 7 years post treatment to 1) examine the effects of breast cancer treatments on the biological
aging process, 2) test the relationship between accelerated biological aging and cognitive and physical
complaints in breast cancer patients over the follow-up period, and 3) test whether inflammatory factors
mediate the relationship between biological aging and cognitive and physical complaints.
If you are accessing this page during weekend or evening hours, the database may currently be offline for maintenance and should operational within a few hours. Otherwise, we have been notified of this error and will be addressing it immediately.
Please contact us
if this error persists.
We apologize for the inconvenience.
- The DCCPS Team.