Physical activity, and the effects of such activity, on the nervous and neuromuscular systems are among the areas of research that Dr. Phillip F. Gardiner, Canada Research Chair in Physical Activity and Health Studies specializes in. He will be upping his own activity levels as the newly appointed Interim Scientific Director of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)’s Institute of Musculoskeletal Health and Arthritis (IMHA). Prior to this appointment, he was member, then Chair, of the IMHA Advisory Board.
Gardiner combines his research program of the fundamental responses of the nervous and neuromuscular systems to altered physical activity, inactivity, and aging, (conducted in his lab in the Spinal Cord Research Centre) with his work as Director of the Health, Leisure and Human Performance Research Institute. He is also Professor in the Department of Physiology, Faculty of Medicine, at the University of Manitoba.
“These are exciting times at CIHR, and I am thrilled to be at the helm of IMHA for the next year. There are many research synergies among the focus areas of IMHA, which include bone, muscle, skin, oral health, arthritis, and rehabilitation, that remain to be incorporated into our flagship research priority, which is “Physical activity, mobility & health,” says Gardiner. “The role of physical activity/inactivity in influencing the appearance, progress and control of health conditions covered under the IMHA umbrella will remain a major area of interest during my watch.”
Alain Beaudet, President of CIHR announced Gardiner’s appointment, effective July 1, 2011. In a message on the CIHR website, Beaudet indicated that “CIHR will be launching a recruitment process for the IMHA scientific director position later this year. In the meantime, I am confident that the institute remains in good hands under the leadership of Dr. Gardiner.”
CIHR is the government of Canada’s major federal funding agency for health research. Its objective includes the creation of new scientific knowledge, translating into improved health care for Canadians, more effective health services and a strengthened Canadian health care system.
IMHA supports research to enhance active living, mobility and movement, and oral health; and addresses causes, prevention, screening, diagnosis, treatment, support systems, and palliation for a wide range of conditions related to bones, joints, muscles, connective tissue, skin and teeth.