• Category Marryalyan
  • DATE 25 Jan 2023

Exercise & Cancer Group

January 2023

This has been my first full year as Chair of the Exercise & Cancer Group, and I have really enjoyed the opportunity to work with such a diverse and dynamic group of health professionals all motivated for promotion of exercise in cancer care. Having spent the first half of the year in Memphis, US, on a Fulbright Fellowship, I did my best with late night meetings to stay in touch with the Exercise & Cancer Executive Committee and other initiatives. Now that I’ve returned, I’m keen on building further in 2023.

There were some great highlights in 2022 including the first face-to-face COSA ASM in years, achievements by individuals and research groups, landmark publications and a changing of the guard in the Executive Committee.

Exercise & Cancer Group at the 2022 COSA Annual Scientific Meeting in Brisbane

How great was it to meet face to face at the 2022 COSA ASM in Brisbane this year! One of my conference highlights, which too was exercise-related, was the multi-disciplinary morning run along Brisbane river. We were represented by medical oncology, surgery, exercise physiology, psychology, and epidemiology. We hope to explore Melbourne’s running landscape in 2023!

The Exercise & Cancer Group was well represented at the conference. We hosted a really interactive AGM, which covered the group’s annual progress and future initiatives. It was a great forum for new members to interact. There were 10 excellent exercise-oncology oral presentations at the ASM, including:

- Cost-utility analysis of a supervised exercise intervention for women with early-stage endometrial cancer - Yufan Wang

- The cancer exercise toolkit: giving exercise professionals online tools to bridge the evidence-practice gap - Amy Dennett

- Exercise across the lung cancer care continuum: an overview of systematic reviews - Lara Edbrooke

- Pre- and rehabilitation for people with lung cancer: current evidence and future directions - Lara Edbrooke

- Health behaviours of Indigenous and non-Indigenous cancer survivors living in regional and remote geographic areas of Australia - Elaina Elder-Robinson

- An individualised exercise intervention improves quality of life for people with multiple myeloma: the MyeEx randomised waitlist-controlled trial - Jennifer L Nicol

- Essential elements of optimal dietary and exercise referral practices for cancer survivors: Expert consensus for medical and nursing health professionals. - Ria Joseph

- The ECHO trial – exercise during chemotherapy for ovarian cancer - Rosa Spence

- Exercise and dietary intervention to improve the quality of life of women diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer - Marina Reeves

- Multimodal intervention for cachexia in advanced cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy. - Vickie Baracos

There were also 18 poster presentations and an EP in Breakfast session on Sarcopenia/Malnutrition.

Awards and achievements

There were some wonderful achievements among members of the Exercise & Cancer Group in 2022, well done to all! These are just a snapshot:

Dr Amy Dennett – Transdisciplinary Research for Energetics in Cancer Fellowship, Yale, US

A/Prof Nicolas Hart – NHMRC Investigator Grant, Cancer Survivorship

Dr Carolina Sandler – NSW Cancer Institute Fellowship, Cancer fatigue

Dr David Mizrahi - Fulbright Fellowship, St Jude Children’s Hospital, Memphis, US, Childhood cancer

A/Prof Tina Skinner – World Cancer Research Fund, Multiple Myeloma

I also wanted to acknowledge the fantastic research consistently coming out of leading Australian exercise oncology research hubs, including iHop (QLD), led by Prof Sandi Hayes, who recently recruited their 500th participant in the ECHO study (exercise RCT for ovarian cancer), and ECU (WA), led by Prof Rob Newton, who continue to lead the way in the implementation and delivery of exercise for Prostate and other cancers.

Research update

There have been numerous exciting new papers in 2022 by COSA members in Exercise-Oncology. This is a testament to the increasingly recognised role for prescribing exercise and supporting patients to become more physically active during and after treatment. Below is a small snapshot of recent articles:

- Nicolas Hart, Rob Newton, Prue Cormie - Exercise Recommendation for People With Bone Metastases: Expert Consensus for Health Care Providers and Exercise Professionals – JCO Oncology Practice

- Stephen Foulkes, Steve Fraser - Exercise for the Prevention of Anthracycline-induced Functional Disability and Cardiac Dysfunction: The BReast Cancer Randomized EXercise InTervention (BREXIT) Study – Circulation

- Rosa Spence, Carolina Sandler, Sandi Hayes - A Randomised, Comparative, Effectiveness Trial Evaluating Low- versus High-Level Supervision of an Exercise Intervention for Women with Breast Cancer: The SAFE Trial - Cancers

Executive Committee Updates

We had a changing of the guard on the committee, including welcoming Dr Lina Pugliano (Medical oncologist), Dr Lara Edbrooke, Liz Pinkham (physiotherapists), Prof Rob Newton, A/Prof Steve Fraser, and Dr Kellie Toohey (Exercise Physiologists). Thank you to former members for their years of service: Andrew Murnane, Lucy Bucci, Sharni Quinn, Morgan Atkinson, Dr Sara Wahlroos, Dr Elysia Thornton-Benko.

The Executive Committee welcomes any suggestions to improve the Group or to conduct initiatives, so we would love to hear from you.

David Mizrahi


Exercise & Cancer Group                                                                  

[email protected]


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