Montreal (Quebec), October 3, 2017 — The Avon Foundation for Women (Canada) has announced funding for a new breast cancer program/trial called ACTIVATE in partnership with the University of Ottawa and the University of British Columbia. ACTIVATE stands for Aerobic Exercise and Cognitive Functioning in Women with Breast Cancer. The study aims to determine if a targeted exercise program can prevent the severe and long-lasting effects that chemotherapy treatment can have on cognitive functioning in breast cancer patients and survivors.
Each year, approximately 25 000 women across Canada are diagnosed with breast cancer, with an estimated 1.7 million women being diagnosed globally. While outlooks for breast cancer diagnoses are improving, healthcare professionals continue to rely on chemotherapy as the main source of treatment. Chemotherapy can result in many short and long-term health problems, including a prolonged reduction in cognitive ability.
Chemotherapy can drastically impact a patient’s ability to think, concentrate and recall even the most commonplace of details. Its effect on the brain, aptly dubbed, “chemo-brain,” makes it difficult for patients to perform ordinary tasks and nearly 75% of all women diagnosed with breast cancer have reported experiencing “chemo-brain” both during and after treatment. Researchers have found that women with breast cancer may be unable to return to their previous occupational, family and social activities as a result of the negative impact that chemo-brain has on their cognitive functioning.
For this reason, the ACTIVATE trial research team led by Dr. Kristin Campbell (Associated Professor at the University of British Columbia) and Dr. Jennifer Brunet (Associate Professor at the University of Ottawa) will be testing if exercise can help to reduce the impact of chemotherapy on the brain to determine if it can be prescribed to prevent or reduce “chemo brain.” “With this grant of $47,500 from the Avon Foundation for Women (Canada), the ACTIVATE trial research team will endeavour to determine if the large economic burden due to demand of health care resources and lost workforce productivity resulting from chemo-brain could be prevented with a controlled exercise regimen.”
Roberta Lacey, President of the Avon Foundation for Women (Canada), said: “The Avon Foundation works to improve the lives of women and their families, which is why we believe that this donation can play a key role in addressing the impact of “chemo-brain” on both the patient and their family. The possibility that exercise could be an accessible and affordable complementary treatment is all the more promising.”
Avon is the largest corporate donor to the breast cancer cause with $815 million donated globally. The Avon Foundation for Women (Canada) raises funds to support important causes like breast cancer research and awareness through the sale of its Shop for the Greater Goods collection of fundraising products. Purchases of Avon Breast Cancer fundraising products have helped fund numerous research initiatives like the ACTIVATE trial in the fight to end breast cancer and have enabled more than 18 million women to access breast cancer screenings and educate more than 145 million people about breast health around the globe. Sales of Avon’s fundraising products can help to turn diagnoses into stories of survival. Avon Canada donates 10% of the sale price from breast cancer fundraising products to the Avon Foundation for Women (Canada) to support Avon Breast Cancer Crusade programs across the country.
About Avon Canada Inc (New Avon LLC)
New Avon LLC (“Avon”) is the leading social selling beauty company in North America, with Independent Sales Representatives throughout the United States, Puerto Rico and Canada. Avon’s product portfolio includes award-winning skincare, color cosmetics, fragrance and personal care products, featuring iconic brands such as ANEW, Avon Color, mark. by Avon, and Skin So Soft, as well as fashion and accessories. Avon has a 130 year history of empowering women through economic opportunity, and supporting the causes that matter most to women. Together, Avon and the Avon Foundation for Women have contributed over $1 billion globally toward eradicating breast cancer and domestic violence. Learn more about Avon and its products at www.avon.ca