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Study to find ways to improve musculoskeletal health

Published: 9 October 2023 at 15:34

A medical image on a computer monitor

Grant to enable researchers to reduce age-related disorders through lifestyle changes

Dr Jasmine Samvelyan, of Anglia Ruskin University (ARU), has been awarded a grant from the Government’s UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) fund to study relationships between the endocrine system that regulates energy metabolism and the responsiveness of the skeleton to physical activity. 

Osteoporosis is a major contributor to loss of independence due to bone fractures. Even after successful fracture treatment, many patients struggle to live independently. While drug treatments reduce consequences of osteoporosis, there is a pressing need for non-pharmacological interventions to improve bone health and to reduce likelihood of age-related bone disease.

Dr Samvelyan, a Senior Lecturer in Biomedical Science of the MBChB course of Anglia Ruskin University (ARU) School of Medicine, said:

“My previous findings indicate associations between the time food is ingested, and bone adaptation to physical activity in a model. 

“If translated to humans, such non-pharmacological lifestyle interventions may benefit skeletal health of humans throughout the life-course and in older age. Our clinical trials have recently received full ethical approval and will be conducted in collaboration with The University of Sheffield Medical School and the Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre of Sheffield Hallam University.”

Co-investigator Eugene McCloskey, MD, FRCPI Professor in Adult Bone Diseases at The University of Sheffield Medical School, who helped develop the FRAX fracture risk assessment tool currently used worldwide, said:

“Broken bones resulting from osteoporosis contribute significantly to loss of independence, frailty, and morbidity in older people. I am pleased to be collaborating with Dr Samvelyan on this important research. There is an unmet need globally for lifestyle interventions to reduce the likelihood of bone fractures with age.”