Cancer- and cancer treatment-associated cognitive change: an update on the state of the science.
ABSTRACT Cognitive changes associated with cancer and cancer treatments have become an increasing concern. Using breast cancer as the prototype, we reviewed the research from neuropsychological, imaging, genetic, and animal studies that have examined pre- and post-treatment cognitive change. An impressive body of research supports the contention that a subgroup of patients is vulnerable to post-treatment cognitive problems. We also propose that models of aging may be a useful conceptual framework for guiding research in this area and suggest that a useful perspective may be viewing cognitive change in patients with cancer within the context of factors that influence the trajectory of normal aging.
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ABSTRACT: Epidemiological studies show a reciprocal inverse association between cancer and Alzheimer's disease (AD). The common mechanistic theory for this effect posits that cells have an innate tendency toward apoptotic or survival pathways, translating to increased risk for either neurodegeneration or cancer. However, it has been shown that cancer patients experience cognitive dysfunction pre- and post-treatment as well as alterations in cerebral gray matter density (GMD) on MRI. To further investigate these issues, we analyzed the association between cancer history (CA±) and age of AD onset, and the relationship between GMD and CA± status across diagnostic groups in the Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) cohort study. Data was analyzed from 1609 participants with information on baseline cancer history and AD diagnosis, age of AD onset, and baseline MRI scans. Participants were CA+ (N = 503) and CA- (N = 1106) diagnosed with AD, mild cognitive impairment (MCI), significant memory concerns (SMC), and cognitively normal older adults. As in previous studies, CA+ was inversely associated with AD at baseline (P = 0.025); interestingly, this effect appears to be driven by non-melanoma skin cancer (NMSC), the largest cancer category in this study (P = 0.001). CA+ was also associated with later age of AD onset (P < 0.001), independent of apolipoprotein E (APOE) ε4 allele status, and individuals with two prior cancers had later mean age of AD onset than those with one or no prior cancer (P < 0.001), suggesting an additive effect. Voxel-based morphometric analysis of GMD showed CA+ had lower GMD in the right superior frontal gyrus compared to CA- across diagnostic groups (P crit < 0.001, uncorrected); this cluster of lower GMD appeared to be driven by history of invasive cancer types, rather than skin cancer. Thus, while cancer history is associated with a measurable delay in AD onset independent of APOE ε4, the underlying mechanism does not appear to be cancer-related preservation of GMD.Frontiers in Physiology 10/2014; 5:423.
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ABSTRACT: This report examines cognitive complaints and neuropsychological (NP) testing outcomes in patients with early-stage breast cancer after the initiation of endocrine therapy (ET) to determine whether this therapy plays any role in post-treatment cognitive complaints.Journal of Clinical Oncology 09/2014; · 17.88 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Objectives Cancer survivors often report cognitive problems. Furthermore, decreases in physical activity typically occur over the course of cancer treatment. Although physical activity benefits cognitive function in noncancer populations, evidence linking physical activity to cognitive function in cancer survivors is limited. In our recent randomized controlled trial, breast cancer survivors who received a yoga intervention had lower fatigue and inflammation following the trial compared with a wait list control group. This secondary analysis of the parent trial addressed yoga's impact on cognitive complaints.Methods Posttreatment stage 0–IIIA breast cancer survivors (n = 200) were randomized to a 12-week, twice-weekly Hatha yoga intervention or a wait list control group. Participants reported cognitive complaints using the Breast Cancer Prevention Trial Cognitive Problems Scale at baseline, immediately postintervention, and 3-month follow-up.ResultsCognitive complaints did not differ significantly between groups immediately postintervention (p = 0.250). However, at 3-month follow-up, yoga participants' Breast Cancer Prevention Trial Cognitive Problems Scale scores were an average of 23% lower than wait list participants' scores (p = 0.003). These group differences in cognitive complaints remained after controlling for psychological distress, fatigue, and sleep quality. Consistent with the primary results, those who practiced yoga more frequently reported significantly fewer cognitive problems at 3-month follow-up than those who practiced less frequently (p < 0.001).Conclusions These findings suggest that yoga can effectively reduce breast cancer survivors' cognitive complaints and prompt further research on mind–body and physical activity interventions for improving cancer-related cognitive problems. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.Psycho-Oncology 10/2014; · 4.04 Impact Factor