Date Published: 28 July 2005

Edinburgh University investigate effect of age on muscle responses to strength training

Health News from Scotland

Researchers at Edinburgh University have started an original study using a novel approach to look at the effect of age on the response of muscles to strength training.

The year-long project aims to shed light on the best ways of helping elderly people to maintain their physical independence and recover after operations. The study will draw in volunteers from central and south Edinburgh, who will attend training sessions at the Royal Infirmary.

Structure of Muscle

The group of 40 volunteers will help the team from the University’s Geriatric Medicine section by learning simple pushing movements designed to train their leg muscles. (Definition of "Geriatric".) The volunteers will also have a muscle biopsy performed, where a small sample of muscle will be taken from the thigh.

Research Assistant Joanna Lynch said:

After illness or surgery, frail elderly people respond to rehabilitation programmes with varying degrees of success. This may be due to the way the muscles of older people respond to training, and we want to examine this process."

Researchers need 20 volunteers aged 75 and older and a control group aged 18 to 30, for the comparative study.
Results will be available in a year’s time.

Announcement of this study was made on Edinburgh University's website on 20th July 2005.

Anyone interested in taking part in the study should contact Joanna Lynch, Geriatric Medicine, University of Edinburgh, Room F1424, The New Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, EH16 4SB.
Tel: 0131 242 6910, for further details.

Source: Edinburgh University

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