|Nutritional intake is known to affect bone and is a potentially modifiable factor. Dietary factors represent an important understudied area in osteoporosis as well as in older adults. The Musculoskeletal Research Program uses Nutritional Epidemiology approaches and methods to investigate the role of diet and nutrition status in musculoskeletal system among elderly. The research focuses on identifying the nutritional risk factors for osteoporosis, relating nutrition status and intake to measures of bone mineral density, muscle mass, falls and fractures in older adults.
Our current research focuses on determining the effect of dietary protein upon bone  and fracture, in a large, community-dwelling, population-based sample of older men and women from the Framingham Offspring Cohort and the Original Framingham Cohort.
In addition to protein, we are also interested in examining the role of B-vitamins [2, 3], vitamin D [4, 5], antioxidants  and fatty acids in maintaining a healthy musculoskeletal system. Furthermore, we are also involved in examining the role of genetic polymorphisms in interaction with dietary intake on bone status .
1. Hannan MT, Tucker KL, Dawson-Hughes B, et al. (2000) Effect of dietary protein on bone loss in elderly men and women: the Framingham Osteoporosis Study. J Bone Miner Res 15:2504-2512.
2. McLean RR, Hannan MT (2007) B vitamins, homocysteine, and bone disease: epidemiology and pathophysiology. Curr Osteoporos Rep 5:112-119.
3. McLean RR, Jacques PF, Selhub J, et al. (2008) Plasma B vitamins, homocysteine, and their relation with bone loss and hip fracture in elderly men and women. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 93:2206-2212.
4. Hannan MT, Litman HJ, Araujo AB, et al. (2008) Serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D and bone mineral density in a racially and ethnically diverse group of men. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 93:40-46.
5. Broe KE, Chen TC, Weinberg J, et al. (2007) A higher dose of vitamin d reduces the risk of falls in nursing home residents: a randomized, multiple-dose study. J Am Geriatr Soc 55:234-239.
6. Sahni S, Hannan MT, Gagnon D, et al. (2008) High vitamin C intake is associated with lower 4-year bone loss in elderly men. J Nutr 138:1931-1938.
7. McLean RR, Karasik D, Selhub J, et al. (2004) Association of a common polymorphism in the methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) gene with bone phenotypes depends on plasma folate status. J Bone Miner Res 19:410-418.