AKTIV Against Cancer presently works in three key regions to advance its mission: Norway, United States, and Ethiopia.
Physical Activity Centers
Since its establishment in 2007, AKTIV Against Cancer has donated over $14M in support of its mission to make physical activity part of cancer treatment. AKTIV Against Cancer has opened 15 physical activity centers called Puste Rommet ("Breathing Room") in cancer treatment hospitals throughout the country. Breathing Rooms provide a space where cancer patients exercise under the expert guidance of instructors trained in physical fitness and cancer. These spaces also provide friendly, social environments as a respite from the challenges of life during cancer treatment.
AKTIV Instructor Program
AKTIV Against Cancer also created the AKTIV Instructor Program in collaboration with the Norwegian School of Sport Sciences and Oslo University. This program educates fitness trainers in exercise and cancer, enabling cancer patients to continue their fitness programs under special care in their local communities.
In 2016, AKTIV Against Cancer announced a $3.3M total commitment to New York's Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK). This contribution supports multiple research projects in the Exercise-Oncology Research Program under Program Director, Lee W. Jones, PhD. Dr. Jones and his team conduct clinical trials to study the effects of structured exercise training on individuals' cardiovascular systems before and during cancer treatment. Another focus of Dr. Jones' research aims to determine if exercise itself is a potential treatment for cancer. These studies examine the effects of exercise on cancer progression and whether exercise affects a patient's response to new and traditional cancer treatments.
Initial results have shown the growth rate of certain tumors is reduced by physical activity as much as with chemotherapy. The combination of physical activity and a cytotoxic agent appears more effective than chemotherapy alone. These promising results indicate physical activity may not only improve quality of life for cancer patients but that it may have medicinal effects against cancer itself.
AKTIV Against Cancer funds the following:
- $325,000 - Preclinical Study: Effects of exercise on tumor dormancy using mouse models of breast cancer bone metastases
- $325,000 - Preclinical Study: Differential effects of exercise across breast cancer clinical subtypes using mouse models of primary breast cancer
- $650,000 - Preclinical Study: Tumor genomic profiling for prediction of response to exercise in patients with solid tumors. This grant also includes a research scholarship in partner with Norway's Kavli Trust to train the next generation of exercise-oncology scientists in Norway.
- $2,000,000 - Supports the overall Exercise-Oncology program at MSK, including the establishment of one of the first-ever physical activity centers in the Unites States dedicated to exercise-oncology research.
Learn more about the work of Lee Jones, PhD, here.
Cancer is an increasing health crisis in Ethiopia. Presently, there are three oncologists serving a population greater than 90 million. AKTIV Against Cancer supports an exchange program between Black Lion Hospital in Addis Ababa and Oslo University Hospital. This program provides oncology training to Ethiopian doctors and nurses to help address the limited doctor-to-patient ratio. AKTIV Against Cancer partners with adidas AG and Ethiopia Athletics Federation President, Haile Gebrselassie, in the hopes of increasing awareness and support to a country facing various health crises.