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Skeletal muscle wasting and myogenic stem cells in cancer Open Access


Other title
radiation attenuation
skeletal muscle
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Esfandiari, Nina
Supervisor and department
Baracos, Vickie (Oncology & Agricultural, Food, and Nutritional Science)
Examining committee member and department
Mazurak, Vera (Agricultural, Food, and Nutritional Science)
McMullen, Todd (Oncology)
Sawyer, Michael (Oncology)
Putman, Charles (Physical Education and Recreation)
Department of Oncology

Date accepted
Graduation date
Master of Science
Degree level
The purpose of this work is to understand properties of skeletal muscle of cancer patients experiencing severe muscle depletion. These studies were done using computed tomography (CT) imaging and patient information (demographics), and collection of muscle biopsies to analyze using flow cytometry, histology, and immunohistochemistry. In study 1, CT data was used to provide an explanatory analysis for radiation attenuation of muscles of cancer patients, a characteristic associated with muscle triglyceride content. Multivariate linear regression analysis revealed that lower muscle radiation attenuation is associated with older age, increased adipose mass, reduced muscle mass and advanced disease. In study 2, CT data and muscle biopsies were used to provide an exploratory examination of muscle morphology and cell composition. Results support the presence of muscle atrophy and a pathological infiltration of fat within muscle. These results will guide future investigations of muscle cell biology and pathology in cancer patients.
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
Citation for previous publication
N. Esfandiari, S. Ghosh, C.M.M. Prado, L. Martin, V. Mazurak, and V. Baracos, “Age, obesity, sarcopenia, and proximity to death explain reduced mean muscle radiation attenuation in patients with advanced cancer,” Journal of Frailty and Aging, 2014, vol. 3, issue 1, 3-8.

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