Resolution reboot: ECU looking for research subjects for exercise study


GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — It’s a perfect time to pair New Year’s Resolution goals with East Carolina University’s role in a breakthrough national research consortium on how molecules within the body are affected by physical activity and exercise.

Dr. Joseph Houmard, East Carolina University professor in the ECU Department of Kinesiology and director of the Human Performance Laboratory, and his multidisciplinary research team are looking for male and female research subjects, ages 18-80, who would like to begin a three-month exercise training program as part of this research project. Participants will exercise under guidance from trained exercise professionals and are eligible for compensation.

This will contribute to a study of ECU, Duke University, Wake Forest University, the University of California, Los Angeles, University of Florida, and other institutions announced in December 2016 as a six-year funding period totaling $170 million from the National Institutes of Health Common Fund. ECU was awarded approximately $1.5 million and has been collaborating directly with a research team at Duke.

“This is a challenging study, but the data gathered will be used for years to really figure out why exercise is good at the molecular level,” Houmard said. “The inclusion of ECU in this groundbreaking study, which includes other top-tier universities, is evidence of the strides taken to enhance research at our university. The ability to implement this multi-year project involves numerous entities at ECU working together as a team.”

Most supervised sessions involve resistance or aerobic exercises within the Human Performance Lab, Houmard said. Workouts are accompanied by unique health assessments and monitoring.

Part of the study focuses on why some people respond better than others to physical activity.

Houmard is the principal investigator of the ECU grant. If interested in participating, email ECU research team member Dominique Jones or call 252-737-1288.

For more information on the Molecular Transducers of Physical Activity Consortium, visit

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