“Our lab is focused on learning how to maintain muscle, which is critical for maintaining independence and a healthy metabolism,” Miller said. “We want to keep people able-bodied for longer so they can get the most out of their years. This research will give us new targets to aim for toward this goal.”
The second significant finding was that changes with age or from atrophy differ from muscle to muscle. Miller said the results led to additional questions about the underlying mechanisms by which some muscles are maintained during aging, while others are not.
“From a public health perspective, this broadens our knowledge and shows us we need to consider muscles on a case-by-case basis,” said Miller. “This also identifies a critical period where, if someone has an extended period of inactivity, we need to target the regrowth and learn what we can do to intervene.”
The findings were published in the Journal of Cachexia, Sarcopenia and Muscle.
Ryan Stewart is media relations coordinator for Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation.
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