of Canadian Innovation Foundation and the Government of Alberta each provided $507,115 in funding to the Precision Human Health Lab at the University of Alberta. This lab will study how exercise can be used to improve the quality of life for people with chronic illnesses.
Stephanie ThompsonAssociate Professor of Nephrology; michael sticklandProfessor of Respiratory Medicine, Oncology Nurse Edith PittuskinAn associate professor from the School of Nursing will co-manage the laboratory.
Stickland described the project as “coming together.” [and] We are building a super lab that allows us to study both of our unique patient groups. ”
Researchers say ‘the effects of exercise are not really the top priority’ in chronic disease research
chronic disease, also known as a chronic disease, is a condition that lasts for more than a year. In many cases, they are incurable diseases. Precision Human Health Lab aims to use exercise to treat the symptoms of chronic disease and improve quality of life.
“Exercise helps you understand what’s going on inside your body.” [and] How do we improve the treatment of those conditions,” Thompson said.
The lab will study how exercise affects common symptoms such as fatigue and shortness of breath. Similarly, exercise is also used to treat symptoms. For example, poor blood vessel health can lead to high blood pressure problems. Thompson said the lab plans to investigate how exercise can improve these symptoms.
This kind of research is rare because doctors don’t often think about using exercise as a treatment, Thompson said.
“Our job is to treat disease. Traditionally, that didn’t include things like exercise. While going to medical school, we didn’t learn how to prescribe exercise. . You just tell people it’s a good thing.”
Stickland suggested another possible reason why exercise prescription is inadequate.
“Pharmaceutical companies are very good at marketing high blood pressure drugs. [However,] In fact, exercise is more effective at lowering blood pressure than high blood pressure medications,” Stickland said.
Thompson added that not much research has been done in this area.
“The effects of exercise aren’t really the top priority. We know much more about how medications affect the kidneys than exercise does.”
Researchers plan to purchase a device that they say will help answer important questions
The researchers plan to use some of the funding to purchase a machine called a near-infrared diffuse correlation spectrometer. This device measures blood flow to your muscles and the amount of oxygen in your muscles. This can usually only be measured with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).
Thompson said the device can answer important questions for researchers and doctors, such as where in the muscle the symptoms originate.
Stickland said the device will set the lab apart from other labs. It is “exercise, heart, lungs, arteries, [and] how they respond to exercise; ”
In addition to the benefits the lab will bring to patients and medical researchers, Stickland believes it will also be a “great experience” for students interested in physical therapy, occupational therapy, medicine, research internships, and summer internships. .
“This will provide the University of A, Canada, and perhaps the world with a unique laboratory.”