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Active Living Centre

Lifestyle research program seeks participants

March 23, 2016 — 

The Manitoba Personalized Lifestyle Research (TMPLR) program kicked off the recruitment phase of a research study examining how genetics and lifestyle interact to shape the health of Manitobans. The launch happened on March 23 and March 24.

Led by University of Manitoba researchers Drs. Peter Jones and Meghan Azad, the study brings together a team of scientists and health care professionals to understand how microorganisms in our bodies, genetics, and lifestyle – such as diet, activity and sleep – interact to shape our health. The knowledge gained will lead to personalized health information and recommendations that will benefit the current and future health of Manitobans.

“We know that lifestyle factors such as diet, activity and sleep interact and influence risk for chronic health conditions. Through TMPLR, our goal is to understand these interactions, and then identify and test recommendations to improve health in a personalized fashion,” said Dr. Jones, Professor in Food Sciences and Canada Research Chair (Tier 1) in Functional Foods and Nutrition, as well as Director of the Richardson Centre for Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals (RCFFN).

“We also know that early life experiences have a long-term impact on health,” said Dr. Azad, Assistant Professor in the Department of Pediatrics and Child Health and Research Scientist at the Children’s Hospital Research Institute of Manitoba. “TMPLR will explore how events during pregnancy and early childhood influence the development of chronic disease in adulthood.”

The study will recruit 1200 total participants over four years, and in the first phase is seeking a cross-section of Manitobans between 30-46 years of age. Participants in the TMPLR study will be asked to come to the RCFFN at the University of Manitoba or to TMPLR’s mobile research unit on two consecutive days to undergo measurements and give biological samples. Samples will undergo analysis for numerous established and emerging health biomarkers and gut microbiota analysis.

Measurements will include a scan to measure body composition and bone density, and physical activity testing to estimate maximal aerobic capacity. Participants will be asked to wear activity monitors for a week to assess day-to-day physical activity and sleep.

The research project will be officially launched today at 11:00 AM in the atrium of the Richardson Centre for Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals.

TMPLR was funded by the Collaborative Research Team/Cluster Development Program from Research Manitoba, receiving $1 million in April 2015. Research Manitoba promotes, supports, and coordinates the funding of research in the health, natural and social sciences, engineering and the humanities in Manitoba.

More details on becoming a participant in the study are available on the TMPLR website

Research at the University of Manitoba is partially supported by funding from the Government of Canada Research Support Fund.

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