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Pepper Center Scholar Dr. Murton Awarded Grant to Study Muscle Loss, Aging, and Obesity

Jan 29, 2024, 08:38 AM by SCOA
UTMB Pepper Center Scholar Dr. Murton, in partnership with Dr. Juan Pablo Palavicini from the Barshop Institute for Longevity and Aging Studies at the University of Texas Health San Antonio, has secured a $100,000 grant from the Older American Independence Center. The grant will fuel a collaborative effort to launch a multi-center pilot study investigating the potential biological factors contributing to muscle loss associated with aging and obesity.

Building on Dr. Murton's prior research demonstrating that obesity in elderly individuals hampers the muscle's responsiveness to dietary amino acids, hindering crucial processes vital for maintaining muscle mass and quality, the researchers aim to delve deeper into understanding this phenomenon. The awarded funds will be utilized to explore the role of ceramides in the development of the muscle's diminished ability to respond to amino acids. Moreover, the team will assess whether this impairment can be reversed through the use of pharmacological inhibitors designed to block the body's synthesis of ceramides.

This groundbreaking work serves as the foundation for future trials, aspiring to develop effective strategies that can safeguard muscle mass and function in the aging population.