NOF Research Agenda

The body of scientific knowledge of osteoporosis prevention, diagnosis and treatment continues to advance but key questions remain. NOF's research agenda is designed to encourage scientific inquiry into a variety of critical clinical issues.

According to the US Surgeon General, osteoporosis is a major public health threat for an estimated 44 million Americans or 55 percent of the people 50 years of age and older. In the US today, 10 million individuals are estimated to already have the disease and almost 34 million more are estimated to have low bone mass, placing them at increased risk for osteoporosis.

In the United States, the cost of osteoporosis in terms of human suffering and healthcare dollars is enormous. In 2005, more than two million incident fractures occurred at a cost of $17 billion. Total costs, including prevalent fractures are more than $19 billion. Annual fractures and costs are projected to rise by almost 50 percent by 2025. The most rapid growth is estimated for people 65-74 years of age, with an increase exceeding 87 percent. Increases of nearly 175 percent are projected for Hispanic and other minority populations.

Progress has been made in recent years in expanding the understanding of the disease in postmenopausal Caucasian women, yet, a great deal is still unknown about the primary prevention of this disease, how best to achieve peak bone mass in children, as well as the epidemiology, pathogenesis, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of the disease in other populations, including men, minority women and premenopausal women.

Due to this gap in knowledge concerning osteoporosis care, the Foundation has established its research agenda to encourage scientific inquiry into the following:

  • Clinical syndromes of abnormal bone remodeling causing skeletal fragility
  • Bone quality studies in humans
  • Studies to improve the ability to predict risk of fracture
  • Clinical studies of the mechanisms of regulation of bone remodeling rates
  • Clinical studies of targeted (mechanically driven), and untargeted (non-mechanically driven remodeling)
  • The impact of hormone replacement therapy in prevention and treatment of osteoporosis in diabetic women
  • Optimal calcium intake in minority women
  • Genetic factors affecting bone mass and bone metabolism
  • New preventive/treatment approaches based on molecular biology
  • Cost-benefit analyses of osteoporosis prevention, diagnostic, and treatment techniques
  • Hip fracture rates in minority men and women
  • Prevention and treatment of osteoporosis in men
  • The intensity, duration, frequency and type of exercise effective for prevention of osteoporosis or osteoporotic fracture
  • Effective measures of screening for and treating risk factors for falling
  • Means for maximizing peak bone mass in children, adolescents and young adults
  • While much progress has been made in learning more about osteoporosis, NOF continues to advocate for expanded support for medical research and education to increase the understanding of the disease in all populations.

NOF Commissioned Research and Special Projects

From time to time, NOF will work in partnership with academic institutions, non-profit organizations and other partners to fund translational or clinical research projects investigating the epidemiology, pathogenesis, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of osteoporosis and which support the mission and goals of the National Osteoporosis Foundation.

For projects in which NOF provides funding, a maximum institutional indirect cost/overhead of 15% may be provided with the grant award.

Receive discounts as an NOF Member

NOF Members receive discounts on these Bone Health related Journals and receive access to additional resources. By becoming a NOF Professional Partner Network member you will have access to resources specifically for clinicians and others who work in the field of osteoporosis and bone health.

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