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1.  The state of research into children with cancer across Europe: new policies for a new decade 
ecancermedicalscience  2011;5:210.
Overcoming childhood cancers is critically dependent on the state of research. Understanding how, with whom and what the research community is doing with childhood cancers is essential for ensuring the evidence-based policies at national and European level to support children, their families and researchers. As part of the European Union funded EUROCANCERCOMS project to study and integrate cancer communications across Europe, we have carried out new research into the state of research in childhood cancers. We are very grateful for all the support we have received from colleagues in the European paediatric oncology community, and in particular from Edel Fitzgerald and Samira Essiaf from the SIOP Europe office. This report and the evidence-based policies that arise from it come at a important junction for Europe and its Member States. They provide a timely reminder that research into childhood cancers is critical and needs sustainable long-term support.
PMCID: PMC3223943  PMID: 22276053
2.  Exercise capacity in apparently healthy survivors of cancer 
To evaluate cardiopulmonary exercise tolerance in a large cohort of apparently healthy paediatric cancer survivors in order to determine their participation in sporting activities.
A total of 84 young (<21 years) asymptomatic childhood cancer survivors, who had been exposed to anthracyclines (mean dose 212 mg/m2) and/or chest irradiation (median dose 2000 cGy), with normal left ventricular systolic function at rest (fractional shortening >29%), and 79 healthy controls were studied. Exercise testing was performed on a treadmill ergometer. Gas exchange analysis and derived variables were measured on a breath‐by‐breath basis. Pulmonary functional evaluation was performed before exercise. Echocardiographic evaluation at rest was performed within one month before the exercise test.
There were no differences in exercise responses between patients and controls. In boys <13 years, mean VO2 max was slightly but significantly lower than in controls. This finding was thought to be a result of decreased physical fitness as all the other exercise parameters were similar to those in the controls.
Results show that apparently healthy survivors of paediatric cancer can take part in dynamic sporting activities if they exhibit a normal response to cardiopulmonary exercise testing, while those that exhibit a reduced VO2 max should be re‐evaluated after an aerobic training programme, and should undergo tailored dynamic physical activity if the VO2 max does not normalise.
PMCID: PMC2083103  PMID: 16188959
anthracycline therapy; subclinical myocardial damage; cancer survivors; cardiac late effects; exercise test
3.  Salvage high-dose chemotherapy for children with extragonadal germ-cell tumours 
British Journal of Cancer  2005;93(4):412-417.
We reviewed the European Group for Blood and Marrow Transplantation (EBMT) experience with salvage high-dose chemotherapy (HDC) in paediatric patients with extragonadal germ-cell tumour (GCT). A total of 23 children with extragonadal GCT, median age 12 years (range 1–20), were treated with salvage HDC with haematopoietic progenitor cell support. The GCT primary location was intracranial site in nine cases, sacrococcyx in eight, retroperitoneum in four, and mediastinum in two. In all, 22 patients had a nongerminomatous GCT and one germinoma. Nine patients received HDC in first- and 14 in second- or third-relapse situation. No toxic deaths occurred. Overall, 16 of 23 patients (70%) achieved a complete remission. With a median follow-up of 66 months (range 31–173 months), 10 (43%) are continuously disease-free. Of six patients who had a disease recurrence after HDC, one achieved a disease-free status with surgical resection followed by chemotherapy and radiotherapy. In total, 11 patients (48%) are currently disease-free. Eight of 14 patients (57%) with extracranial primary and three of nine patients (33%) with intracranial primary GCT are currently disease-free. HDC induced impressive long-term remissions as salvage treatment in children with extragonadal extracranial GCTs. Salvage HDC should be investigated in prospective trials in these patients.
PMCID: PMC2361583  PMID: 16106248
extragonadal germ cell tumour; high-dose chemotherapy; salvage therapy; children
4.  Cardiac hypoxia and subsequent reoxygenation: sensitivity to L-arginine methylester. 
British Journal of Pharmacology  1986;87(4):649-656.
The effect of L-arginine methylester (L-Arg-Me) was studied in the isolated heart of the guinea-pig perfused with hypoxic substrate-free medium for 30 min and subsequently reoxygenated with normal saline solution for 30 min. The administration of L-Arg-Me in basal conditions decreases dose-dependently heart rate without any changes in the myocardial structure. On the other hand, the administration of L-Arg-Me (5-10 mM) decreases ventricular arrhythmias, especially during reoxygenation; in fact ventricular fibrillation is abolished. L-Arg-Me treatment increases the recovery of normal electrical and mechanical activity at the end of reoxygenation and reduces the increase in basal tone. Treatment with 10 mM L-Arg-Me decreases lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) release in the effluent and lysosomal fragility in cardiac tissue, while it does not influence calcium gain. L-Arginine (L-Arg) does not mimic any of the effects of L-Arg-Me.
PMCID: PMC1916797  PMID: 3708203

Results 1-4 (4)