What We Do
The LTFU Study is looking at the complicated part of various health conditions found over time among a large group of survivors of childhood cancers. The classic definition of epidemiology is the study of the distribution and determinants of health-related states and events in populations, and the application of this study to control of health problems.
A cohort study compares a group of people who share a common characteristic with another group that does not have the characteristic. The common characteristic might be a medical condition, a treatment, or a behavior (for example, smoking or physical activity). The participants in the LTFU Study share a common history of diagnosis and treatment for cancer or a similar illness during childhood or adolescence.
Sibling comparison group
In the LTFU Study, a certain number of participants were randomly chosen, like a flip of a coin, to invite one of their siblings (brothers or sisters) close to them in age to be in sibling comparison group that is the control group for the cohort. For best results, the people in a study’s comparison group should be as similar as possible to the group being studied. The brothers and sisters of participants who are also part of the study are very important to the success of our research. The sibling group is similar to the LTFU Study cohort in almost every way except they did not receive treatment for cancer or a similar childhood illness. The LTFU Study follows the health status of participants and their siblings over time. If survivors in the study have different health outcomes when compared to their brothers and sisters, these results provide strong evidence about how cancer treatments affect long-term health.
Identifying and preventing late-effects
Late-effects outcomes are health problems that persist or develop later in life and are associated with treatments that survivors received as treatment for a childhood cancer. The LTFU Study was designed to collect health information at regular intervals from a select group of survivors of childhood cancer to better understand how treatment for childhood cancer affects long-term health.
The study’s research includes DNA banking, which stores participants’ biological material (like blood, saliva, or buccal cells) for use in future genetic studies.