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High-intensity, high-impact exercise training, with increased dietary protein intake to improve musculoskeletal health in postmenopausal women and middle-aged men


   Musculoskeletal Science and Sports Medicine

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  Prof Craig Sale  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (UK Students Only)

About the Project

The expanding elderly population comes at a cost, with the potential for an increase in the number of conditions associated with low muscle (e.g., sarcopenia) and bone (e.g., osteoporosis) masses. As a consequence of ageing associated changes to muscle and bone (as well as ligament and tendon), osteoarthritis (OA) also figures as a major health issue for the ageing population. Taken together, these conditions are associated with significant negative health outcomes including frailty and early mortality, which come at a huge cost for the NHS and UK economy. As such, interventions are urgently required to improve musculoskeletal health in at risk populations, with lifestyle interventions relating to exercise and diet being particularly attractive options. We are looking for a PhD researcher to help investigate this issue and improve the musculoskeletal health of middle-aged to older individuals through specific lifestyle interventions.

The successful candidate will be based within our Musculoskeletal Science and Sports Medicine Research Centre.

Aims and objectives

This PhD programme of work will be focussed upon designing and then determining the efficacy of a high-intensity, high-impact exercise training intervention in older adults (primarily postmenopausal women) for the protection of musculoskeletal tissues against the age-associated decline typically observed in these populations. Secondarily, we will look to induce synergistic effects on musculoskeletal tissues by increasing dietary protein intake.

Specific requirements of the project 

The proposed studies in this PhD programme of work will have an applied and basic-science focus and there is certainly some scope for the PhD researcher to have input into the outcome measures included in the programme of work. These studies will employ the current gold-standard techniques available in musculoskeletal imaging. Applicants should have:

  1. Knowledge and some experience of standard research techniques and methods within sport and exercise science (or a related discipline), and the ability to develop skills further in this area;
  2. The ability to collate, interpret, and analyse data;
  3. Strong interpersonal skills;
  4. A keen and active interest in exercise physiology and musculoskeletal health

Funding Notes

Fully-funded PhD (home fees), stipend paid at 2022/23 rate of £16,062. Expected start date January 2023.

How good is research at Manchester Metropolitan University in Sport and Exercise Sciences, Leisure and Tourism?


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