The University of Michigan was recently awarded a $3.9 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to strengthen its existing musculoskeletal health research program by accelerating new cross-disciplinary research throughout the university.
Sixty faculty members from seven schools across U-M will comprise the new Michigan Integrative Musculoskeletal Health Core Center (MiMHC) research community, including the School of Public Health, School of Medicine, School of Dentistry, College of Engineering, School of Kinesiology, Life Sciences Institute, and College of Literature, Science and the Arts.
The grant, known as a P30, is awarded to a small number of U.S. institutions where a number of investigators from different disciplines focus on a common research problem through a joint research effort.
“The MiMHC was structured to accelerate science and innovation at U-M around understanding mechanisms of musculoskeletal health, injury and disease across the lifespan,” says Dr. Karl Jepsen, professor and associate chair of research of orthopaedic surgery, and director for the MiMHC.
He adds, “This grant enabled us to establish the MiMHC and will give our researchers the ability to break down silos within the various disciplines, while encouraging research targeting interactions across musculoskeletal tissue types, such as bone, muscle, tendon, ligament and cartilage.”
The MiMHC has three goals:
Three main research cores within the MiMHC will focus on histological assessment, structural and compositional assessment, and functional assessment. The cores move from molecular mechanisms through functional outcomes.
“This is an exciting time for those of us in musculoskeletal research,” Jepsen says. “Greater interactions between basic scientists and clinicians are important to the future of medicine and the care we will be able to provide to patients in the years to come.”