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US Department of Defense awards University of South Florida $1.59 million for musculoskeletal research
Date:9/22/2011

Tampa, FL (Sept. 23, 2011) -- The University of South Florida School of Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation Sciences has received a $1.59-million U.S. Department of Defense award for leading-edge musculoskeletal research intended to benefit active duty soldiers and veterans and improve military preparedness.

The award will fund two major studies one investigating whether a specific exercise training regimen may protect against low back injury in combat soldiers and the second evaluating the best prosthetic foot to accommodate soldiers and veterans with below-the-knee amputations who wish to return to active duty. Both two-year studies, about $715,000 each, are randomized controlled trials considered the most reliable and impartial method of determining which rehabilitative treatments and adaptive devices work best. The research will test in military populations an exercise therapy and technologies that have already shown promise in civilians.

"This latest federal award clearly places the University and our School as a key Department of Defense partner for evidence-based research involving prosthetics and low back injury risk reduction," said the project's principal investigator William S. Quillen, PT, DPT, PhD, FACSM, associate dean for the USF College of Medicine and director of its School of Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation Sciences.

"Finding the best interventions for our warfighters and wounded warriors in both these areas is of great interest to the military," said Quillen, a former U.S. Navy physical therapist.

The Department of Defense research award was sponsored by U.S. Rep. Gus Bilirakis and supported by Rep. C.W. "Bill" Young. Both studies are scheduled to begin early next year.

The USF low back injury study will test in healthy soldiers the effectiveness of a high-intensity exercise training program that isolates and strengthens the lumbar extensor muscles those long, large muscles used to keep the
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Contact: Anne DeLotto Baier
abaier@health.usf.edu
813-974-3300
University of South Florida (USF Health)
Source:Eurekalert  

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US Department of Defense awards University of South Florida $1.59 million for musculoskeletal research
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