Dr Ayse Zengin awarded grant for Indigenous Bone and Muscle Ageing

Dr Ayse Zengin from the Bone and Muscle Health Research Group is the recipient of the ‘Amgen-Osteoporosis Australia-Australia & New Zealand Bone and Mineral Society Clinical Grants Program.’

Dr Zengin received $40k for her SIMBA project, which is the study of Indigenous Bone and Muscle Ageing. The clinical grants program provides opportunities for researchers to conduct high quality clinical research that aims to reduce the burden of osteoporotic fractures, and improve the clinical care and quality of life of people with osteoporosis and fractures.

Dr Zengin’s SIMBA project looks at why fall and fracture risk is greater amongst Indigenous Australians. Indigenous Australians suffer from hip fractures at a younger age and have higher rates than non-Indigenous Australians. Lower life expectancy in Indigenous-Australians means that age onset of bone loss is unknown. Dr Zengin will use data to inform when the best ‘window of opportunity’ is to test for osteoporosis in Indigenous-Australians to reduce fracture prevalence.

The study will also use the latest technology in bone imaging to measure various components of bone strength in adult Indigenous men and women. These images will show bone structure in the leg and arm in 3D, allowing for a comprehensive assessment of bone health. Whole body fat mass and lean mass will be measured by the most accurate method currently available, the DXA scanner, as these also affect musculoskeletal health.

Upon receiving her award at the recent Australia & New Zealand Bone and Mineral Society (ANZBMS) annual meeting in Darwin, Dr Zengin said, “I'm very excited to be working together with the Aboriginal health service in Dandenong, as together we can help improve the musculoskeletal health of Indigenous Australians.”