Regular Stretching Found to Impair Breast Cancer Growth in Mouse Study

Regular Stretching Found to Impair Breast Cancer Growth in Mouse Study
Daily stretching reduces tumor growth and improves the immune and inflammatory responses in mice with breast cancer, according to researchers. Their study, "Stretching Reduces Tumor Growth in a Mouse Breast Cancer Model," was published in the journal Scientific Reports. Increasing evidence suggests that exercise can reduce the risk of developing breast cancer or of breast cancer relapse (recurrence) in cancer survivors. It has also been suggested as a method to ease treatment side effects and improve quality of life. However, preclinical results are heterogeneous and inconsistent, and the type, duration, intensity, and frequency of exercise that could potentially prevent and control breast cancer remains unclear. Yoga, tai chi, and qi gong are mind-body practices frequently used and well-tolerated among cancer patients to manage symptoms and improve mobility and well-being. Stretching is a common component among these gentle movement-based exercises, and 10 minutes of stretching per day has been shown to reduce local inflammation and scarring — biological processes associated with cancer. Researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital, in collaboration with colleagues at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, both in Boston, evaluated whether daily stretching could affect tumor growth in mice with breast cancer. Researchers injected breast cancer cells into the breast tissue of 66 female mice, which were then randomized to receive 10 minutes of daily stretching for four weeks. Mice received no other form of treatment during the study. The team used a well-established stretching technique, in which mice are held by the base of the tail and gently lifted, with their front paws grasping a bar. With minimal training, mice can comfortably hold this position
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