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Open Access Development of a Mouse Model for Assessing Fatigue during Chemotherapy

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Fatigue and disturbed sleep are common problems for cancer patients and affect both quality of life and compliance with treatment. Fatigue may be associated with cancer itself and with the treatment, particularly for therapies with neurotoxic side effects. To develop a model system for evaluation of chemotherapy-related fatigue, we studied mice treated with either a commonly used formulation of the chemotherapeutic agent paclitaxel (paclitaxel; Taxol), which is known to have neurotoxic properties, or a nano- particle formulation of paclitaxel (nab-paclitaxel; Abraxane) that is reported to have greater potency and efficacy yet fewer side effects than does paclitaxel. Mice were treated with 1 of these 2 agents (10 mg/kg IV daily for 5 consecutive days) and were monitored from 1 wk before through 4 wk after treatment. Dependent measures included running wheel activity, locomotor activity on the cage floor, core temperature, sleep patterns, CBC count, serum cytokine and chemokine concentrations, and neurologic assessment. For both drugs, mice showed the most severe perturbations of activity during the first recovery week after drug administration. Mice treated with paclitaxel showed greater neutropenia and motor deficits than did mice treated with nab-paclitaxel. However, deficits had largely resolved by 4 wk after administration of either drug. We conclude that these measures provide an assessment of chemotherapy-related fatigue that potentially can distinguish toxicity associated with different formulations of the same agent.

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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Medical Microbiology, Immunology, and Cell Biology, Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, Springfield, Illinois, USA 2: Department of Medicine, Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, Springfield, Illinois, USA 3: Department of Medical Education, Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, Springfield, Illinois, USA 4: Department of Pharmacology, Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, Springfield, Illinois, USA. [email protected]

Publication date: 2011-04-01

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  • Comparative Medicine (CM), an international journal of comparative and experimental medicine, is the leading English-language publication in the field and is ranked by the Science Citation Index in the upper third of all scientific journals. The mission of CM is to disseminate high-quality, peer-reviewed information that expands biomedical knowledge and promotes human and animal health through the study of laboratory animal disease, animal models of disease, and basic biologic mechanisms related to disease in people and animals.

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