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Exercise in childhood cancer patients – Metabolomics analysis

06.07.2021, Diplomarbeiten, Bachelor- und Masterarbeiten

Exercise is generally recommended as an adjunct therapy for cancer patients as it may counteract some of the adverse effects of cancer and its treatment. In addition, exercise-induced molecules such as catecholamines are known to change cancer cell signaling, proliferation and have been linked to clinical outcomes such as survival in adults. Recent studies demonstrate anti-cancer effects of exercise-induced adrenaline through natural killer cell mobilization and Hippo signaling.

We recently completed data collection for our Munich Adrenalin and Cancer Study (MACS). Pediatric cancer patients aged 6-18 years between the first and third course of cancer treatment performed a single bout of high intensity interval training (HIIT) on a bicycle ergometer. Blood for adrenaline analysis was taken prior to and after the exercise. One aim of this study is to identify metabolites in children that are changed by exercise. We focus on metabolites that affect cancer cell signaling or behaviour such as proliferation.
In the long run, we want to improve exercise therapy in pediatric cancer patients by exploring changes in hormones and metabolites during exercise in combination with chemotherapy and thus improve the global success of pediatric cancer treatment.
The primary aim of this master thesis is the comprehensive search and analysis of metabolites that have been screened in a targeted metabolomics analysis. Some metabolites change more than others and we want to determine if/how these metabolite concentrations can potentially affect (pediatric) tumor cells (cell proliferation/signaling).
We are seeking to recruit a highly motivated MSc student to perform the comprehensive literature analysis and support us in preparing a framework to interpret the results of this innovative research approach.
Candidates need to have a thorough understanding of exercise physiology, should be solid in search strategies and enthusiastic in reading up on the subject “Metabolomics”. Reliability and good skills in writing in English are required as we aim to publish the results of this project in autumn.

Kontakt: martin.schoenfelder@tum.de

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