Research Research groups Exercise oncology

About this research group

This research group focuses on the role of exercise in patients with cancer. The multidisciplinary work focuses on the effects and underlying mechanisms of exercise on quality of life and clinical outcome.


dr. Laurien Buffart

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Our group has several aims. read more


Our group has several aims.

  • The effects of exercise interventions on physical function, quality of life, toxicity and outcome (recurrence-free, progression-free or cancer-specific survival) in patients with cancer
  • Mechanisms of action through which exercise may affect quality of life, toxicity and outcome
  • The most optimal (and minimal) exercise type and dose to achieve beneficial effects in patients with cancer
  • Levels of physical activity and fitness and examine their predictive value for treatment toxicity, treatment decisions, and outcome
  • Subgroups of patients with cancer who are particularly at risk for low physical activity and fitness
  • How to improve exercise participation and adherence, particularly in patients who are older, unfit, unmotivated or have comorbidities or low socioeconomic status


Several discoveries were made by our research group. read more


A selection of recent discoveries is listed here:

  • Exercise interventions have significant beneficial effects on physical fitness, fatigue and health-related quality of life in various groups of patients with cancer during and following cancer treatment (Br J Sports Med 2019; Med Sci Sports Exerc 2020, Cancer Treat Rev 2017).
  • To maximize benefits, exercise interventions should be specifically targeted to patients with cancer in need (JNCI 2018).
  • Exercise may attenuate the chemotherapy induced decrease in the rate of muscle force development, thereby limiting fatigue (Scand J Med Sci Sports 2020).
  • Patients with cancer reported that participating in a supervised exercise program improved their quality of life by improving physical fitness and influencing social, mental, and cognitive factors (Oncologist 2019).
  • Beneficial effects of exercise on health-related quality of life are mediated by increased fitness and subsequent fatigue reductions (Med Sci Sports Exerc 2016).