The American Cancer Society (ACS) and Sleep Number Corporation announce a landmark partnership to embark upon foundational sleep research to inform the first-ever sleep guidelines for cancer. Over six years, ACS will conduct research with contributions from Sleep Number’s proprietary sleep data and sleep expertise to identify the impact of quality sleep on cancer prevention and recovery, leading to improved sleep outcomes for cancer patients and survivors.
Sleep problems can be common in people with cancer and can affect a person’s ability to do everyday activities. Sometimes changes in sleep are temporary, while others may last several months to years after cancer treatment. This can lead to having lower energy levels and can affect tasks at home, work, or school. It can also affect the enjoyment of social activities, friends, family, or hobbies.
There is limited knowledge of the biologic mechanisms by which sleep may affect cancer risk or outcomes after a cancer diagnosis, and while poor sleep quality may be associated with the risk of developing some types of cancer, evidence to date is limited. ACS will pair ongoing cancer prevention studies, utilizing over 13 billion hours of sleep data from Sleep Number. The collaboration between the two organizations will enable cancer research and prevention studies tied explicitly to quality sleep and, with Sleep Number’s previously announced support of ACS’s Hope Lodge communities, provide support for patients and caregivers who need sleep to bolster their physical, mental, and emotional resilience.
“Sleep quality is a documented problem for cancer patients and longer term in cancer survivors, and the ability to formally study sleep’s impact on cancer has been limited. We plan to close that gap,” said Dr. Karen Knudsen, American Cancer Society Chief Executive Officer. “Through our partnership with Sleep Number, the ACS research team will more precisely measure the impact of sleep quality, with the potential of developing evidence-based sleep guidelines. As such, this research endeavor is fully aligned to our mission to improve the lives of cancer patients and their families.”
The study will take place as part of an ongoing ACS cohort study. Sleep Number’s contributions will enable targeted, cancer-related sleep science exploration, combining the magnitude of the ACS body of evidence regarding cancer prevention with the 360 smart bed’s highly accurate, longitudinal sleep data to meaningfully advance cancer-related sleep interventions.
“Our partnership with American Cancer Society will directly support our company purpose — to improve the health and wellbeing of society through higher quality sleep. We will utilize our 360 smart bed’s proprietary sleep data and sleep expertise, along with ACS’s tremendous body of research, to benefit cancer patients and survivors, and society at large,” said Shelly Ibach, President and CEO, Sleep Number. “Cancer is undiscriminating — it affects everyone. Sleep is also universal. Our hope is that sleep guidelines will help to eradicate this devastating disease and improve millions of lives. We are honored to join ACS in the fight for a world without cancer.”
This article was originally published February 2, 2022, by American Cancer Society. It is republished with permission.