Substrate oxidation during exercise in childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia survivors.

Bertrand É; Caru M; Morel S; Bergeron Parenteau A; Belanger V; Laverdière C; Krajinovic M; Sinnett D; Levy E;
Marcil V; Curnier D;

Pediatric hematology and oncology [Pediatr Hematol Oncol] 2023 Jul 13, pp. 1-18.
Date of Electronic Publication: 2023 Jul 13.

Children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) are at high risk of developing long-term cardiometabolic complications during their survivorship. Maximal fat oxidation (MFO) is a marker during exercise of cardiometabolic health, and is associated with metabolic risk factors. Our aim was to characterize the carbohydrate and fat oxidation during exercise in childhood ALL survivors. Indirect calorimetry was measured in 250 childhood ALL survivors to quantify substrate oxidation rates during a cardiopulmonary exercise test. A best-fit third-order polynomial curve was computed for fat oxidation rate (mg/min) against exercise intensity ( V ̇ O 2 peak) and was used to determine the MFO and the peak fat oxidation (Fat max ). The crossover point was also identified. Differences between prognostic risk groups were assessed (ie, standard risk [SR], high risk with and without cardio-protective agent dexrazoxane [HR + DEX and HR]). MFO, Fat max and crossover point were not different between the groups ( p  = .078; p  = .765; p  = .726). Fat max and crossover point were achieved at low exercise intensities. A higher MFO was achieved by men in the SR group (287.8 ± 111.2 mg/min) compared to those in HR + DEX (239.8 ± 97.0 mg/min) and HR groups (229.3 ± 98.9 mg/min) ( p  = .04). Childhood ALL survivors have low fat oxidation during exercise and oxidize carbohydrates at low exercise intensities, independently of the cumulative doses of doxorubicin they received. These findings alert clinicians on the long-term impact of cancer treatments on childhood ALL survivors’ substrate oxidation.