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BMJ Open. 2013 Jun 20;3(6). pii: e002869. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2013-002869.

Canadian Study of Determinants of Endometabolic Health in ChIlDrEn (CanDECIDE study): a cohort study protocol examining the mechanisms of obesity in survivors of childhood brain tumours.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.



Childhood obesity has reached epidemic proportions and is impacting children's health globally. In adults, obesity is associated with chronic low-grade inflammation that leads to insulin resistance, which is one of the important mechanisms through which dysregulation of metabolism occurs. There is limited information available about the contribution of inflammation to metabolic health in obese children, and how individual and lifestyle factors impact this risk. One of the paediatric groups at risk of higher rates of obesity includes the survivors of childhood brain tumours. The aim of this study was to evaluate the mechanisms that contribute to inflammation in obese survivors of childhood brain tumours.


This is a prospective cohort study. We will recruit lean and obese survivors of childhood brain tumours, and a control group composed of lean and obese children with no history of tumours. We will measure circulating and urinary cytokine levels and cytokine gene expression in monocytes. In addition, the methylation patterns of cytokine genes and that of toll-like receptor genes will be evaluated. These will be correlated with individual and lifestyle factors including age, sex, ethnicity, puberty, body mass index, fasting lipid levels, insulin sensitivity, diet, exercise, sleep, stress and built environment. The sample size calculation showed that we need 25 participants per arm


This study has received ethics approval from the institutional review board. Once completed, we will publish this work in peer-reviewed journals and share the findings in presentations and posters in meetings.


This study will permit the interrogation of inflammation as a contributor to obesity and its complications in obese survivors of childhood brain tumours and compare them with lean survivors and lean and obese controls with no history of tumours, which may help identify therapeutic and preventative interventions to combat the rising tide of obesity.



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