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The investigation of cardiotoxicity and risk of developing subsequent heart diseases following breast cancer radiotherapy: a clinical and experimental study
Portugal (PorMSIC) - University of Lisbon, Lisbon
Angiogenesis Lab, CCUL, Faculdade de Medicina da Universidade de Lisboa, Av. Prof. Egas Moniz,1649-028, Lisboa, Portugal
Type of Research Project
- Clinical Project with Laboratory work
What is the background of the project?
Radiotherapy plays an important role in the treatment of breast cancer as well as many other malignant diseases; however,radiotherapy is not innocuous and it may lead to coincidental irradiation of the heart resulting in cardiotoxicity and subsequent heart diseases. In particular and the reason behind this project,is that there is still a lack of knowledge and means for early detection and prediction of cardiotoxicity following breast radiotherapy that can appear long before the onset of clinically significant cardiac events.
What is the aim of the project?
Our main goal is the development of innovative data crucial to better understand the cardiovascular toxicity induced by breast cancer radiotherapy.
What techniques and methods are used?
This project is included in an experimental and clinical study. This project, MEDIRAD, is funded by HORIZON 2020(http://www.medirad-project.eu/) The experimental study will use rats as a test subject. The heart of rats will be irradiated with different doses of ionizing radiation by using a linear accelerator, during 25 consecutive days. Cardiovascular function will be assessed overtime by echocardiography. There is also a clinical study associated. A cohort study aims to evaluate early cardiovascular changes after breast cancer radiotherapy. Patients with left and right breast cancer, treated with postoperative radiotherapy alone (without chemotherapy) after breast conserving surgery are being included in this study and several exams are being done.
What is the role of the student?
- The student will mainly observe
- The student will observe the practical experiments but will be highly involved in the analysis of the results
- The tasks will be done under supervision
What are the tasks expected to be accomplished by the student?
The student should actively collaborate with the other team members and give critical input every day in what regards to the experimental and clinical part of the present study presented in the techniques and methods. The student should analyze the echocardiography data obtained during the irradiation of the rodent hearts with different doses of ionizing radiation by the linear accelerator and discuss it with the tutor and lab partners. The analysis of the collected data will be made using SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences), a program for data analysis and statistics.
Will there be any theoretical teaching provided (preliminary readings, lectures, courses, seminars etc)
Yes, the student will be integrated in the work team meetings and will discuss the project everyday with the supervisor.
What is expected from the student at the end of the research exchange? What will be the general outcome of the student?
- No specific outcome is expected
What skills are required of the student? Is there any special knowledge or a certain level of studies needed?
No special skill is required, just a highly motivated student.
Are there any legal limitations in the student’s involvement
Type of students accepted
This project accepts: - Medical students - Graduated students (less than 6 months) - Pre-Medical students from the American-British system
- Curigliano; G. et al. Cardiotoxicity of anticancer treatments: Epidemiology; detection; and management. CA. Cancer J. Clin. 66; 309-325 (2016)
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