Arthritis Research UK Medical Research Council

CIMA Objectives

Through an innovative, comprehensive and sustainable research programme, CIMA aims to produce a step change in understanding, preventing and managing musculoskeletal ageing, which has a tangible positive impact on the musculoskeletal wellbeing among older people.

The objectives of the Centre are to:

  • Develop and exploit an integrated research framework for ageing of the musculoskeletal system
  • Identify how intrinsic mechanisms of ageing contribute to musculoskeletal dysfunction and understand the impact of musculoskeletal ageing on age-related well being
  • Identify and share optimal techniques and approaches to monitor age-related changes in all musculoskeletal tissues, and provide an integrated assessment of musculoskeletal function
  • Develop and test novel interventions based on nutrition, exercise and/ or pharmacology to maintain or enhance bone, cartilage, ligament/tendon and muscle function during ageing and to reduce age-related deterioration of the whole musculoskeletal system
  • Build capacity by training young researchers and clinicians with multidisciplinary skills in musculoskeletal ageing

Specific Scientific Aims over the first 5 years:

  • To identify the key, common changes in basic mechanisms that lead to age-related loss of function in bone, cartilage, tendon/ ligament and skeletal muscle
  • To determine the role of epigenetic and inflammatory changes in age-related decline in musculoskeletal homeostasis and function and to determine the impact of dietary factors and physical activity on these pathways
  • To design and test nutritional and physical activity interventions to preserve musculoskeletal function as individuals age