[Cite as http://purl.org/au-research/grants/nhmrc/250411]
Prof Leslie Cleland
Prof Howard Morris
Brief description Osteoporosis in a major public health problem which directly affects about 10% of the population, which is currently around 2 million Australians. With aging of the population, it is projected that this proportion will increase to more than 13% over the next 20 years. When it is considered that the direct hospital and residential care costs attributable to osteoporotic fractures currently approaches $2 billion per annum, low-cost interventions for increasing bone strength which are easily applied to the elderly population have enormous potential for health benefits in Australia. Thus study will examine the effects of dietary omega-3 fats, of the kind found in fish and fish oil, on the biology of bone metabolism and on bone strength. The results will provide information which may be used in developing simple drug or dietary strategies for large-scale use for increasing bone mass and strength in the elderly population. A strength of the study arises from the combination of research expertise in (a) dietary fats, and (b) molecular biology of bone cells, and (c) animal models of bone metabolism which are amenable to dietary interventions. This combination is unique, but builds on well established systems which hitherto have existed in separate research paradigms. The Chief Investigator has considerable experience in development of diets enriched in omega-3 fats which are practical and suitable for daily use on a long-term basis. This adds considerably to the potential significance of the outcomes because, if favourable effects of omega-3 fats are observed and are characterised with regard to mechanisms, the results can be rapidly translated into large-scale clinical use.
Funding Amount $AUD 380,250.00
Funding Scheme NHMRC Project Grants
Standard Project Grant