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September 29, 2021

WPI granted $464K to study stress fractures in female runners

Photo | Grant Welker Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Worcester

Worcester Polytechnic Institute researcher and biomedical engineering professor Karen Troy was awarded $463,645 by the National Institutes of Health to study the causes of foot injuries among female runners, according to a Tuesday press release from the school.

In a three-year undertaking, Troy will study the role of muscle and bone strength in stress fractures, using data simulations, computer imaging, and analysis of 45 female runners.

The results of the study are meant to deepen the understanding of what causes repeated injuries among female runners, helping to design more effective treatment plans for patients.

WPI students will be involved in the research through coursework and seminars, said the release.

“At the end of the research project, we want to have useful advice for clinicians so they can identify runners who, either because of their foot anatomy or other characteristics, are at high risk of bone-stress injuries,” Troy said in a statement. “The ultimate goal is to prevent repeated injuries.”

NIH is part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and invests approximately $41.7 billion in medical research annually, according to its website.

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