Toggle Main Menu Toggle Search

Open Access padlockePrints

Towards a toolkit for the assessment and monitoring of musculoskeletal ageing

Lookup NU author(s): Matt Jackson, Professor John Mathers



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


The complexities and heterogeneity of the ageing process have slowed the development of consensus on appropriate biomarkers of healthy ageing. The MRC-Arthritis Research UK Centre for Integrated research into Musculoskeletal Ageing (CIMA) is a collaboration between researchers and clinicians at the Universities of Liverpool, Sheffield and Newcastle. One of CIMA’s objectives is to ‘Identify and share optimal techniques and approaches to monitor age-related changes in all musculoskeletal tissues, and to provide an integrated assessment of musculoskeletal function’ i.e. to develop a toolkit for assessing musculoskeletal ageing. This toolkit is envisaged as an instrument that can be used to characterise and quantify musculoskeletal function during ‘normal’ ageing, lend itself to use in large-scale, internationally important cohorts, and provide a set of biomarker outcome measures for epidemiological and intervention studies designed to enhance healthy musculoskeletal ageing. Such potential biomarkers include: biochemical measurements in biofluids or tissue samples, in vivo measurements of body composition, imaging of structural and physical properties, and functional tests. The CIMA Toolkit Working Group assessed candidate biomarkers of musculoskeletal ageing under these four headings, detailed their biological bases, strengths and limitations, and made practical recommendations for their use. In addition, the CIMA Toolkit Working Group identified gaps in the evidence base and suggested priorities for further research on biomarkers of musculoskeletal ageing.Prof. John C Mathers, MRC-Arthritis Research UK Centre for Integrated research into Musculoskeletal Ageing (CIMA), Human Nutrition Research Centre, Institute of Cellular Medicine and Newcastle University Institute for Ageing, Newcastle University, William Leech Building, Framlington Place, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE2 4HH, UK.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Kemp GJ, Jackson MJ, McCloskey EV, Mathers JC

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Age and Ageing

Year: 2018

Volume: 47

Issue: 6

Pages: 774-777

Print publication date: 01/11/2018

Online publication date: 05/09/2018

Acceptance date: 06/04/2018

Date deposited: 04/05/2018

ISSN (print): 0002-0729

ISSN (electronic): 1468-2834

Publisher: Oxford University Press


DOI: 10.1093/ageing/afy078


Altmetrics provided by Altmetric


Funder referenceFunder name
MR/K006312/1Medical Research Council (MRC)
MR/K006312/1Medical Research Council (MRC)